Georgia Gov. lifts COVID-19 restrictions: Columbus community weighs in

Updated: Apr. 8, 2021 at 7:54 PM EDT
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - Georgia Governor Brian Kemp rolled back COVID-19 restrictions in the Peach State for the sake of the economy, but also because more residents are getting vaccinated.

”We will no longer allow businesses to fail to comply with our executive orders,” Kemp said.

An executive order which took effect Thursday, April 8, eliminates bans on gatherings and shelter-in-place requirements.

In Columbus, leaders say precautions still need to be in place.

“Our mask mandate will remain in place until it no longer meets the threshold that was suggested by the governor,” Columbus Mayor Skip Henderson said.

The order also means no more six-foot social distancing requirements for businesses like restaurants, bars, movie theaters, and gyms.

According to the Columbus Health Department, the positivity rate has increased by roughly three percent in the last few weeks, holding steady at almost 11 percent.

Health officials say little is known whether or not the COVID-19 vaccines stop transmission of the virus and it does not completely protect someone against infection. Pamela Kirkland with the health department says it’s for that reason that Georgian’s should still stay vigilant.

“While our positivity rate is still a bit high, I think it might be a good idea to continue practicing what we have been doing,” Kirkland said.

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