Businesses in New York can deny entry to individuals who do not wear masks or face-coverings thanks to an Executive Order issued by Gov. Andrew Cuomo Thursday.
According to the governor the measure builds on the state's ongoing efforts to protect New Yorkers and slow the spread of COVID-19.
"We are giving the store owners the right to say if you are not wearing a mask, you can’t come in. That store owner has a right to protect themselves. That store owner has a right to protect the other patrons in that store. You don’t want to wear a mask? Fine, but you then don’t have a right to go into that store if that store owner doesn’t want you to," he said.
Cuomo has hailed the effectiveness of masks and face coverings as a means of halting the spread of coronavirus for weeks and did so, once again, during his coronavirus press briefing Thursday, calling masks " amazingly effective."
The executive order was issued the same day that Cuomo announced the state will distribute one million masks to New York City's hardest-hit neighborhoods. The state has already distributed more than 8 million masks across New York City, including to NYCHA developments, food banks, churches and homeless shelters.
Although Cuomo has continuously praised the effectiveness of masks, he also acknowledged on Thursday that people may not want to listen to him on this particular topic -- so he has decided to bring reinforcements: two famous Brooklynites.
Comedian Chris Rick and actress Rosie Perez joined Cuomo during his Thursday coronavirus press briefing to emphasize the message and urge, not only other fellow Brooklynites, but New Yorkers in general to wear masks and get tested.