Dozens protest before hearing on Kansas City mask mandate extension

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Kansas City Council committee is considering the extension of the indoor mask mandate Wednesday night.

The current mandate expires Aug. 28, but a new ordinance introduced by Mayor Quinton Lucas would extend it to Sept. 23.

Before Wednesday’s committee meeting, which includes public testimony, dozens against the mask order held a rally outside.

“The city doesn’t pay for my medical problems like my health care,” protester Jessica Bran said. “I should be able to take care of myself.”

“The health choices I make might not be able to be the health choices people make, but I think it’s important that we maintain the ability to make those choices,” Bonnie Gembrin said.

With signs in hand, a large group waited outside the Kansas City Police Academy before the special committee meeting. Many of them said extending the mandate takes away their medical freedom.

“I never liked the government overreaching the way they have been, but I do listen to doctors saying they’re not healthy, they’re not healthy for children,” Macy Englebert said.

Health experts have stressed, however, that face masks are perfectly safe and the most effective way to prevent the rapid transmission of COVID-19.

“It’s really hard for me to be OK doing that because I feel like as they get older, I want them to make these kinds of decisions for themselves,” Gremblin said of her kids. “I also want to make it so they can make these decisions like this for themselves.”

Protesters said if the mandate is extended, the city is showing it doesn’t value their opinions.

FOX4 has a crew at Wednesday night’s committee meeting and will bring you the latest developments online and on FOX4 News at 9 and 10 p.m.

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