Mask use is still required in Tisbury municipal buildings

Visitors to Tisbury Town Hall will have to wear masks through Labor Day.

The Tisbury board of health voted unanimously Tuesday afternoon to require masks in all town buildings until Labor Day. The vote came with the stipulation the board could rescind the order before Labor Day if it so chose. The board also voted unanimously to require town meeting attendees, who will gather under a tent at the Tisbury School, to wear masks. However later Tuesday evening a town official expressed a desire to compare Tisbury’s stance to the nation’s on mask requirements. 

During a discussion of future events in town, Tisbury select board members were surprised to learn that health agent Maura Valley had emailed administrative assistant Alexandra BenDavid and town administrator Jay Grande to say that masks would be required inside town buildings through Labor Day.

The board had planned to return to in-person meetings on June 15, select board chair Jim Rogers said. “If the national movement is not to have masks, I’d like to further that conversation if we could,” he said.

Grande said he would seek clarification from Valley about whether masks would be required for in-person meetings.

The decision comes as the Island is seeing an uptick in COVID-19 cases

Earlier at the board of health meeting, health agent Maura Valley made it clear the town isn’t out of the woods yet. 

“Last week we had a lot of cases,” Valley told the board. “They look like they’ve gotten a little bit better over the last couple of days — fingers crossed — but I believe when the state issued their report on Thursday that Tisbury will be a red high risk community again. Hopefully it’s just a one week blip, but I don’t know. We’re really trying to concentrate our efforts on outreach and vaccination and hopefully soon we’ll see results from that.”


  1. Absolute nonsense. Masks have been used for decades in hospitals surgical facilities to prevent bodily fluids or bone fragments from entering the doctors or nurses mouth or nose. If they were effective in preventing the spread of viruses then all hospital workers would have been wearing them for decades. Let’s move beyond this scam.

    • There is a time where masks are helpful and relevant in slowing the spread of Covid or other respiratory viruses, and times where they are unnecessary (i.e. people walking in the woods alone or along a stretch of road where the closest people are driving by in cars)- in the latter it’s just paranoid hygiene theater but relatively harmless, if not worthy of an eye roll. That said, unless you have medical expertise to back up your statement, it’s problematic.

  2. Scientific data has proven, over and over, that masks are effective in preventing the spread of virus-containing droplets coming from people’s mouths and noses. They also are effective in protecting the mask-wearer.

    The lie told in the above comment, that masks are not effective, is not debatable. This particular lie spreads misinformation. People who believe this lie, and other covid lies that people continue to spread here and elsewhere, is why “COVID cases on the rise again” is in the news this week on the island.

    “Our policy of not allowing comments that dispute the existence of climate change and sea level rise, or who attempt to spread misinformation about COVID-19, remains in place. Established science is not debatable or helpful for an Island looking at its future survival.”

    Yes, ESTABLISHED SCIENCE IS NOT DEBATABLE, so what sort of response does this newspaper expect from readers? By allowing covid lies, about which there can be no debate– like mask wearing is a scam– this newspaper is contributing to confusion and misinformation which in turn leads to the island’s continuing cases.

    • Just because you call it “established science” doesn’t make it so. Here’s a link to an actual study on mask use by the National Institute of Health whose conclusion was “In conclusion, there is a limited evidence base to support the use of masks and/or respirators in healthcare or community settings.”

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