Beckley organizations partner to support #WearAMask campaign

BECKLEY, WV (WOAY) – The City of Beckley and WVU Tech are partnering to support a campaign that encourages people to wear masks.

The campaign called #WearAMask was started in May by Dr. Ayne Amjad, and has taken off around the area. 

“It’s current, it’s refreshing. Y’know #WearAMask, everyone hashtag something these days. So we’re hashtagging wear a mask because that’s one of the most important things you should be doing right now,” Michelle Rotellini of the Raleigh County Chamber of Commerce said. 

WVU Tech decided to support the campaign because of WVU’s general encouragement for all of their students to wear masks. When students return next month, they’ll need to follow strict mask and social distancing rules. 

“Lots of things are happening, one of them of course is everyone will be required to wear a mask on campus, unless they are in their room or eating. And that will be staff, faculty and students,” WVU Tech President Carolyn Long said.

As well, the city’s support of the campaign goes all the way to the mayor. Mayor Rappold says he wants everyone in the community to start wearing a mask if they haven’t yet. 

“It’s important. If you love your family, if you love your parents and your grandparents, if you respect your fellow neighbors and your fellow shoppers then wear a mask. It’s that simple,” Rappold said.

Despite the positive messages of the campaign, there are many in the community who don’t want to wear masks for one reason or another. According WVU Tech, they wish to encourage these people to speak with their community members and have a discussion about it.

“We hope that we can approach that and have a dialogue with folks, and bring folks together, and make it a point of collaboration and community, rather than a point of disagreement.”

The campaign is both physical and digital. They’ve put up signs around the area encouraging people to wear masks. As well, they’ll be posting about it regularly on social media.