Missouri Balks At State Mandates Despite ‘Red Zone’ Status

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Missouri’s top health official insists a statewide mandate for masks and social distancing doesn’t make sense, even though the federal government has designated the state a “red zone” for new coronavirus cases. Dr. Randall Williams, director of the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services says designation is cause for concern.  He says Missouri is a diverse state and that instead of a statewide mandate he favors a strategy that supports local officials. But others note the virus is spreading more freely among counties without links to crowded facilities such as nursing homes and meatpacking plants.