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Study shows Wyoming last among U.S. states in mask compliance

A Jackalope wears a mask as it greets visitors to Dubois, Wyo., in June, 2020. (Dan Cepeda, Oil City)

CASPER, Wyo. – Data collected by the Delphi Group and posted by Carnegie Mellon University shows that Wyoming is in last place when it comes to mask compliance.

The data is published in an interactive map that gathers state-by-state statistics on several topics regarding COVID-19.

According to the data, 66.7 percent of Wyoming’s population wears a mask “most or all of the time” as of Oct. 27.

Wyoming’s closest rival is South Dakota, which reports 74.3 percent of users doing so. North Dakota and Idaho follow, with 74 percent and 76.7 percent, respectively.

Other neighbors to Wyoming have various health ordinances in place and show a higher observance of mask wearing. Colorado clocks in at 89 percent, and Montana is at 82 percent.

The survey is updated as data becomes available. Going back to previous reports shows an uptick in mask usage over time. In late September, Wyoming’s mask usage was just 58.9 percent.

Health experts continue to stress the scientific research behind the effectiveness of masks in prevent the spread of COVID-19. Last week, Wyoming’s State Health Officer and State Epidemiologist Alexia Harrist said the lack of COVID spread in Wyoming’s schools, which practice strict mask policies, proves that masks work.

Wyoming governor Mark Gordon has continuously resisted issuing masking mandates in the state, leaving it up to counties and local governments to decide on the best course of action. Laramie County is considering a mask mandate, which closely follows Teton County’s examble, Wyoming’s only county with a mandate.

The original post of this article mistakenly quoted a wrong date. The error has been corrected.

The Wyoming Department of Health provides COVID-19 case, variant, death, testing, hospital and vaccine data online. The department also shares information about how the data can be interpreted. COVID-19 safety recommendations are available from the CDC.