SARATOGA SPRINGS — City officials on Friday launched “Mask Up, Saratoga Springs,” a campaign to urge the public to wear face masks, especially when they are downtown.
City Finance Commissioner Michele Madigan said the educational campaign will include a series of lawn signs, posters and public service announcements aimed at increasing the safety of the business community, area residents and visitors during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The campaign was unveiled Friday afternoon during a press conference outside City Hall, attended by Madigan, Public Safety Commissioner Robin Dalton, along with other city officials and local business leaders.
City officials have noted that a significant number of this summer’s visitors to the city — which is still seeing some tourism, despite Saratoga Race Course being closed to the public — are not complying with Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s mandate that the public wear masks while out in public.
“The ‘MaskUp, Saratoga Springs’ campaign is our city’s effort to normalize mask wearing in the fight against COVID-19 and to debunk myths associated with masks,” Madigan said. “Along with physical ‘social’ distancing and regularly washing hands or using hand sanitizer, wearing a mask is the easiest way to stop the spread of COVID-19.”
The campaign will encourage people to wear masks, wash their hands frequently and maintain social distancing — the basic public health guidance federal, state and local officials have been offering since the pandemic began in March.
While Saratoga County has a low infection rate, state Department of Health statistics show a handful of new COVID-19 cases continue to be reported each day in the county. To date, there have been 17 deaths in the county.
“Unfortunately, COVID-19 shows no signs of going away any time soon. However, there are simple steps we can all take to protect ourselves, our loved ones, and our communities, Madigan said. “For starters, we urge everyone to Mask Up and make masks part of your daily wardrobe and regular routine.”
Reach staff writer Stephen Williams at 518-395-3086, [email protected] or @gazettesteve on Twitter.