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New Mexico Mandates Face Masks At Retail Stores, Restaurants

(Patrick Sandoval via AP)

New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham has ordered workers at retail stores and restaurants to wear face coverings as a precaution against the spread of COVID-19, starting with big box stores and major grocery stores Wednesday.

The requirement extends to other essential businesses starting on Monday.

Lujan Grisham made the announcement in a video news conference as state health officials warned that current trends in coronavirus infections might compel the state to extend a stay-at-home order past May 15.

Governor Lujan Grisham extended to Thursday a lockdown in Gallup, New Mexico enforced by the NM National Guard and local authorities to prohibit non-essential road traffic through the city although Interstate 40 has remained open in Gallup.  Gallup, located on the edge of the Navajo Nation and near the Arizona state line, has seen a high rate of COVID-19 cases.  It is ranked as third in the nation for known Coronavirus cases behind New York City and New Jersey.

New Mexico health officials on Tuesday confirmed six new deaths and 107 infections linked to the coronavirus pandemic. That brought the statewide total for confirmed infections to 4,138, with 162 deaths.

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