Rexburg residents gathered at City Hall on June 17 to protest the vote on implementing a mask mandate in city limits.
The idea introduced by the city council earlier this week, proceeds a mask mandate in Boise and several other cities across the country.
Protesters gathered outside of City Hall and inside the City Hall Chamber to share their opinions on the mandate. Rexburg’s City Council allowed those on either side of the issue to speak about why they think there should or should not be a mask mandate.
Protesters wore red, white and blue while carrying homemade signs.
“The average citizen needs to be able to live their life,” said Dennis Summers a resident of Rexburg. “When the government starts telling certain people what to do, they’re forgetting that we’re the boss and that they are our servants.”
While in the council meeting, a small group of residents supported the mask mandate, but a majority did not.
“You think in a place where so many people profess to be their ‘brother’s keeper,’ who want to help in any way (they) can when there is a crisis, they (also) have their leaders pleading with them to wear a mask,” said Annalisa Wade, addressing the council. “It’s not an infringement it’s an opportunity to help.”
Towards the end of the meeting, a city council member made the following motion: individuals are required to wear masks while they reside in Rexburg’s city limits. Two council members voted for the motion, the remaining four council members voted against the motion.
In response, Mayor Jerry Merrill made a motion to make future plans for a resolution called “United We Stand Against COVID-19.” This motion passed with five votes for the motion and one vote against. Mayor Merrill stated in the meeting that an outline for the new plan will be revealed in the upcoming weeks.