N.C. health leaders continue public face-covering push with new ‘Whatever Your Reason’ campaign

N.C. health leaders continue public face-covering push with new ‘Whatever Your Reason’ campaign
‘This virus is still a serious threat’: NC health leaders concerned by COVID-19 trajectory (Source: WBTV)

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - North Carolina health officials continue to push the public to wear face coverings in public.

On Thursday, Dr. Mandy Cohen, with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, announced the state’s new public service campaign – “Whatever Your Reason.”

“It’s a statewide public campaign to encourage every North Carolinian to wear a mask in our collective fight against COVID_19.”

The message will be shared across the state through commercials to television and radio, social media, billboards and advertisements on public transportation.

Health leaders showcased its first public service announcement on Thursday that shows real people in North Carolina explaining personal reasons why they choose to wear a face covering.

“This will stop the spread of COVID-19,” Cohen said.

The campaign has a goal of reaching the highly-marginalized areas for people who are mostly impacted by the virus, which includes members of the LatinX and Black community.

“Why do you wear a mask?” Cohen said. “For me, I wear it to protect my family, friends and co-workers, and out of respect for every North Carolinian.I wear a mask because I know my actions will make an impact in slowing the spread in North Carolina.”

The first public service announcement, called “Whatever Your Reason, Get Behind the Mask,” was informed by recent research conducted by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and statewide online focus groups, which showed that North Carolinians have personal reasons for wearing a mask, including: avoiding the spread COVID-19 (77%), wanting to protect their community (72%) and families (71%), and feeling a sense of responsibility (72%). The campaign highlights many of the deeply personal, yet distinctly familiar, reasons people from across North Carolina are choosing to get behind the mask.

“We all have a reason to fight the spread of COVID-19,” Cohen said. “We are excited to launch the ‘Whatever Your Reason’ campaign to remind every North Carolinian that there is a reason behind every decision to wear a mask. For me, I wear my mask to protect my family and out of respect for every North Carolinian working hard to do the same. So, whether it’s getting back to work and school or protecting our loved ones, whatever your reason, get behind the mask.”

As of Thursday afternoon, 172,209 people in North Carolina have tested positive for COVID-19, with a disproportionate number of those cases occurring in the Latinx/Hispanic, Black/African American, and American Indian communities.

Cohen said NCDHHS is committed to ensuring that the “Whatever Your Reason” campaign’s prevention message reaches people across the state, with an intentional focus on reaching historically marginalized communities most impacted by the pandemic.

To support this goal, NCDHHS has committed approximately $3.9 million dollars of CARES Act funding to the campaign.

To access campaign resources in English, visit: ncdhhs.gov/WhateverYourReason.

To access campaign resources in Spanish, visit: ncdhhs.gov/CualEsTuRazon.

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