Face covering requirement in Dallas County goes into effect Saturday

On Saturday, an order from Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins went into effect.

It requires anyone 2 years old or older to wear a mask or some other kind of face covering when going to an essential business or using public transportation.

Officials have said people do not need to go out and buy a mask. Instead, they can use a scarf, a towel or anything that covers their nose and mouth.

Tyler Frost was ready to enter an Uptown convenience store Saturday afternoon, until he realized he forgot a mask. So he improvised.

He covered his face with paper towels until he could buy a mask while inside the store.

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BERLIN, GERMANY - APRIL 02: Made-to-order protective face masks lie on an ironing board at the workshop of master tailor Ala Hadye on April 02, 2020 in Berlin, Germany. Hadye, who has had to close her shop due to nationwide measures enacted to slow t (Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images))

Dallas County’s face covering order is now in effect. It asks people to wear some sort of mask when inside businesses, but people walking down the street don’t need to wear a face covering.

The order has caught some off guard.

Ernestina Eguya was using an umbrella cover until she was able to buy a mask. She said a majority of people are obeying the rule, but not everyone.

“I don’t know if they really don’t care or if they just think they’re so healthy that they don’t need one,” she said.

A line of people practicing social distancing waited to get inside of Target in Uptown.

Most had some sort of face covering, but it appeared not everyone was prepared before stepping inside.

Target officials said it’s not turning those without masks away, but simply reminding them that if they don’t have one while inside, they are violating the county order.

“I’ve been anticipating it for some time and I don’t know why we weren’t doing it earlier,” Theresa Dionne said.

Dionne and her friends said they were meeting in public on a beautiful afternoon in West Village for the first time since the pandemic began.

Of course, it’s not what they’re used to.

“We like to go to theater, movies, dinner, lunches,” they said.

But even with non-essential businesses still closed and social distancing practices in place, they said their time spent together is refreshing.

“You have to pay very close attention that you’re staying far apart,” he said. “And helps us get back to some level of normalcy.”

Dallas County maintains law enforcement will not be enforcing the face covering order.

It’s somewhat of an honor code that the county says will help speed up a return to the way things used to be.

For now, people are getting by with all sorts of face coverings in hopes that it helps flatten the COVID-19 curve.

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