No social distancing at protests; Ohio County Health Department responds

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If you're heading to the streets with signs in hand, you're advised to take caution. ​

WHEELING W.Va. (WTRF) – Protests during a pandemic now raise new red-flags; how will community members demonstrate their rights and make sure they don’t take COVID-19 home with them?

Hundreds were taking to the streets in Wheeling Sunday following a national movement, and there will most likely be more protests to come. So, Howard Gamble, with the Ohio County Health Department, says there is a safe way to go about maneuvering crowds.​

Amidst a pandemic, streets across the country have been flooded with people, donning signs, and *some in masks.​

In big cities, the health administrator says you’re spread out more, but in the close-knit streets of Wheeling, staying 6-feet-apart, doesn’t seem possible.​

So, in order to keep a line of defense between yourself and the deadly virus the country has been fighting, if you head out to peacefully protest, ​don’t forget your PPE.​

Wear a mask. Especially peaceful protests, because those seem to be more condensed, more together; saying things in unison, even singing or participating. So, if you’re gonna gather in large groups, wear a mask. And that’s about all we can do when we’re gathering peacefully.

Howard Gamble, Ohio County Health Department

​In terms of COVID-19 cases in Ohio County, as livelihood opens back up, Gamble says he hasn’t seen a huge resurgence of the virus, and he hopes to keep it this way even while the large, intimate-gatherings continue on.

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