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Barry-Eaton mask mandate lift causing mixed emotions

Published: Oct. 1, 2021 at 6:52 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, Mich. (WILX) - Barry-Eaton County students have had to wear masks since the start of the school year, that is until now. Now mask mandates have been lifted and some parents say they are disappointed.

Nick Bradford’s daughter is a student in Charlotte and he says he isn’t pleased with the decision.

“I don’t think it’s right,” Bradford said. “I really think it’s about keeping our kids safe and my daughter is a seven-year-old in second grade here in town and she hasn’t had her vaccine yet because it hasn’t been approved.”

But other parents in the county are pleased with the health department’s decision. Ryan Gurn has a son who’s a junior at Charlotte High School. His son is currently in quarantine due to possible exposure from a local church. Despite the scare, Gurn is still in favor of the ban being lifted.

“I believe everybody has freedoms in our country. We’re protected by the constitution and, within that protection, if you want to wear a mask, wear a mask and if you don’t want to wear a mask, then don’t wear a mask,” Gurn said. “But we don’t force things on each other. I wouldn’t expect somebody to force a mask on me and I wouldn’t expect somebody to force me not to wear a mask.”

As of now, Charlotte Public Schools has lifted its mandate for students. Superintendent Stewart says she hopes the option of choice will make the mask decision less divisive.

Stewart said, “Our educators are working really hard to provide live instruction and I know masks are a very divisive issue and people have a lot of passionate feelings about them but I’d really like to keep having our community support.”

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