N.Y. sheriff: ‘We’re not the face mask police’

FULTON COUNTY, N.Y. (WNYT/NBC News) – New York Governor Andrew Cuomo issued an executive order last week limiting social gatherings in New York to no more than 10 people as part of efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19. The governor said it was up to local governments to enforce his restrictions, but some sheriffs say that won’t happen.

“We’re not the face mask police. We’re not the turkey police,” says Fulton County Sheriff Rich Giardino.

“I’m not saying COVID is not dangerous,” Giardino adds. “I think COVID is very dangerous.”

Giardino points out only 28 people have died of coronavirus so far in Fulton County, and most of them were at a private nursing home. He’s also well aware that, according to the State Department of Health, COVID Tracker only 1.2% of his constituents are testing positive these days.

However, beyond the numbers, Giardino sees the limitation of at-home Thanksgiving guests as a clear government overreach.

“I just think that as another sheriff said, ‘The best way to do things is to ask people to follow these recommendations because they’re good for you,’ he says, “Not to make it an edict from the king telling you what to do.”

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