What does this mask ordinance mean for Memphis?

WATCH: What does the mask ordinance mean for Memphis?

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The Memphis City Council has officially passed a mandatory face-covering ordinance.

But what does it mean for folks in the city?

Have questions about the spread of coronavirus? We have an entire section dedicated to coverage of the outbreak. CLICK HERE for more.

Content Continues Below

No, the ordinance wasn’t approved with same-night minutes, as they call them.

A Memphis City spokesperson told us it won’t be final until the next council meeting.

But until then, we spoke with the councilman who co-sponsored the ordinance.

Before you had recommendations and now you actually have a law.

Citizens know the difference between this is a law, you have to do it, and this is a recommendation.

After more than an hour of passionate debate Tuesday night, the Memphis City Council passed the ordinance that requires people to wear face coverings in the city of Memphis.

It will require a face mask to be worn in businesses, inside public buildings, and when at the doctor.

It also applies when people are waiting for or riding the bus and employees of restaurants and other places will still be required to wear a mask, too.

Dr. Jeff Warren co-sponsored the ordinance.

He told us although they decided not to start out with rigid penalties, he believes citizens will still do what they’re supposed to.

“We were able to make a law,” Warren said. “We don’t have severe punishments for that law because we just want people to know it’s a law, let’s start doing it. It will keep our businesses open and protect our community.”

Warren told us his biggest concern in the community is teens and 20-year-olds who may be asymptomatic, but still spreading the virus and hopes this ordinance will help.

“They have to step up to the plate and protect the rest of society now,” he said. “Unfortunately, it means they have to grow up a little early.”

We reached out to Mayor Jim Strickland’s office Wednesday.

In a statement, the mayor said:

“We are still reviewing the ordinance to fully understand how the council would like it enforced; however, we are hopeful that citizens will comply out of care and compassion for their fellow Memphians.”