An Oregon county has exempted non-white people from mandated face masks to combat racial profiling.
Lincoln County health officials announced last week that residents must wear face coverings in public where they come within six feet of another person who is not from the same household. The order exempts people of color if they have "heightened concerns about racial profiling and harassment" for wearing the masks, officials said.
"No person shall intimidate or harass people who do not comply," health officials said.
Some have raised concerns about racial profiling as more areas begin to require masks in public, with one economics professor at Ohio State University saying that mandating face covering is "basically telling people to look dangerous given racial stereotypes that are out there."
"This is in the larger context of black men fitting the description of a suspect who has a hood on, who has a face covering on," said Trevor Logan, who is black. "It looks like almost every criminal sketch of any garden-variety black suspect."