CONWAY, Ark. — The Conway City Council unanimously voted Monday evening to require masks in public settings within the city.
The ordinance goes into effect immediately and applies to all age groups.
This ordinance means that face masks are required in all businesses, whether the owners already had a mask policy or not.
The Arkansas Department of Health can enforce regulation on the business if they do not follow proper guidelines, however, no fines or arrests will take place.
Police can be called to an establishment if they or customers are not following proper guidance only to educate on the importance of wearing masks and social distancing.
If a customer continues to refuse to wear a mask, they will be escorted out of the business.
There were mixed emotions on social media from Conway residents about the mask ordinance.
Conway Alderman Andy Hawkins and other council members expressed their biggest agreement for wearing a mask is because people could be contagious with the virus and not have any symptoms.
"We had three medical professionals speak to our group and every one of them say asymptomatic people are out there that are spreading the disease and don't know it," said Hawkins.
Hawkins said he knows people can't be forced to put on a mask, so he asks that people follow the ordinance to keep the Conway community safe and healthy.
"We are not dumb and we know there are people out there who are not going to use them, but I'm very convinced that right now this is the way that is best to slow down this particular virus and so we are going to go ahead and use it to the fullest extent we can," said Hawkins.