Correction issued below
SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham is cracking down on COVID-19 restrictions. There’s now a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to wearing masks and she said if New Mexico doesn’t shape up, it could affect reopening schools.
The Governor and doctors said that the spread of the virus has been increasing around the state at an alarming rate, but she said there’s still time to turn things around if people do their part. “We have the power to make it right,” said Governor Lujan Grisham.
In a press conference Thursday, the governor said New Mexico has fallen behind in the battle against COVID-19. “Northwest cooling off, actually coming down in terms of cases, the southeast now a new hot spot,” said Dr. David Scrase.
Dr. Scrase is the state’s Human Services Secretary. He said they’re now seeing an astronomical increase in cases in the southeast part of the state, but things aren’t looking much better in other parts, including Bernalillo County.
New Mexico is seeing a 79% increase in daily cases. That’s why on Thursday, the governor announced she is once again tightening restrictions. First up, she’s making masks mandatory whenever you are outside of your home.
“If you’re out on a walk, you need to have a mask on,” said the governor. “If you’re at the gym, you need to have a mask on. If you are taking a walk and window shopping, you have to have a mask on.”
She’s encouraging out-of-state visitors to stay away and people wanting to visit state parks have to show they live here in New Mexico. “Visitors have to prove their proof of residency, they have to have their driver’s license, state license plate. Camping at state parks is prohibited so day use only,” said the governor.
The governor said if New Mexicans can’t slow the spread, it jeopardizes the possibility of reopening schools. “If we’re going to open schools in August, we have July basically to get back where we were and to get into a place to see that we are stable and that some counties are in a decline per week, per fourteen days,” said the Governor.
Correction: In a previous story KRQE reported that cases statewide have shot up 79 percent in the last 16 days which is incorrect. New Mexico is seeing a 79% increase in daily cases, not a 79% increase in 16 days.