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Jeff Jacobs: Mask mandate for CIAC sports is almost over, but let’s face it, when was it really enforced? – CT Insider

The COVID mask mandate for Connecticut high school athletes this winter has been a charade.

A sham.

A joke.

And in the end Ned Lamont, Dr. Manisha Juthani and Charlene Russell-Tucker have been unmasked as the unfortunate punchline. Unless they also have been part of the charade, the governor and commissioners of the Department of Public Health and Department of Education have been duped into believing the rule of law would be honored and enforced.

It hasn’t.

Old news flash: Over hundreds of games, a tiny number of athletes have worn their masks properly over their noses and mouths during competition.

On Dec. 22, Lamont’s office announced high school athletes would continue wearing masks regardless of vaccination status. Initial plans were to drop the mandate if vaccinated by Dec. 23, but a spike in COVID cases put a halt to the plan.

Remember Christmastime? The omicron variant was threatening to put us through the wringer again.

Basketball, indoor track running events and ice hockey were subject to the mask mandate. And guess what? Few listened. If they listened, fewer obeyed.

Back in the third week of December, Mike DiMauro of The Day of New London wrote: “If it is the objective that high school athletes in Connecticut continue to wear masks during indoor athletic competition, then the standard must be enforced consistently. The current procedure isn’t working, based on every recent photo published here in The Day and other media outlets. Most, if not all, images depict kids with masks (at best) pulled below their noses. Many expose their noses and mouths, referred to in some circles as ‘chin diapers.’”

That was two months ago. Nothing changed. If anything, even fewer obeyed the mandate that is set to end Feb. 28.

Earlier in the winter, I’d typically see, oh, two out of 10 kids on the basketball court properly wearing a mask. A highlight was one game when a sub entered without any mask at all. The official blew his whistle. The kid went and got a mask and promptly made it a chin diaper. Game on!

In December, CIAC executive director Glenn Lungarini said a letter had been sent to member schools restating the expectation and necessity of all COVID protocols because “we saw an issue with athletic teams not complying with the masking requirements.” Lungarini said the CIAC Board of Control has the authority and duty to enforce its regulations and, if deemed necessary, assess penalties including fines, probation or elimination from state tournament play.

Photos, videos and personal accounts continue to demonstrate an overwhelming number of athletes not adhering. At Christmas, I would have put the number at 15-20 percent wearing masks during competition. Now, considerably less.

On Feb. 11 and 12, I went on a little reconnaissance mission to count masks worn during games. A girls varsity game. A boys junior varsity game. A boys varsity game. Seemed like a decent sample size. Approximately 60 players appeared in those three games. You know how many wore their masks over their nose and mouth?

None.

About 75 percent wore them only over their mouths. The other 25 percent wore them as chin diapers, possibly to collect all the excuses their adult superiors will make if questioned.

Clearly, no one has had to take responsibility.

Not the game officials, who always seem to make sure their own masks …….

Source: https://www.ctinsider.com/gametimect/article/Jeff-Jacobs-The-mask-mandate-for-CIAC-sports-is-16936172.php

The COVID mask mandate for Connecticut high school athletes this winter has been a charade.

A sham.

A joke.

And in the end Ned Lamont, Dr. Manisha Juthani and Charlene Russell-Tucker have been unmasked as the unfortunate punchline. Unless they also have been part of the charade, the governor and commissioners of the Department of Public Health and Department of Education have been duped into believing the rule of law would be honored and enforced.

It hasn’t.

Old news flash: Over hundreds of games, a tiny number of athletes have worn their masks properly over their noses and mouths during com…….

The COVID mask mandate for Connecticut high school athletes this winter has been a charade.

A sham.

A joke.

And in the end Ned Lamont, Dr. Manisha Juthani and Charlene Russell-Tucker have been unmasked as the unfortunate punchline. Unless they also have been part of the charade, the governor and commissioners of the Department of Public Health and Department of Education have been duped into believing the rule of law would be honored and enforced.

It hasn’t.

Old news flash: Over hundreds of games, a tiny number of athletes have worn their masks properly over their noses and mouths during com…….

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