FERNDALE, Wash. - In Ferndale, several dozen people rallied on Main Street, demanding to have the option to choose if their kids wear a mask in school.
This was one of several rallies throughout Whatcom County focused on "medical freedom."
From about 5 p.m. to around 7 p.m. on Wednesday, about three dozen people, made up of adults and children, waved flags, held signs, and chanted at passing cars along Main Street in Ferndale.
Jessica Cadero says she doesn’t wear a mask, or make her kids wear them in public. However, she says her children were required to wear them during school last year.
"It made me feel bad for them. They suffered a lot having to wear the masks all day," she said.
She says she is considering homeschooling her children this upcoming school year.
The decision to take children out of school is one some parents say they already made.
"Politicians are telling us what to do with our children. I don’t want them living in fear I don’t want them walking around wearing a mask all the time because they don’t work anyways no offense I think it should be a parents’ choice," said Karly Unruh.
Unruh says she made the decision last year to homeschool her children.
She says she is making her voice heard at this rally to stand up for her kids, and other families.
However, some people do not believe this sort of effort is necessary.
"They have a right to express their opinion I think that it’s interesting that that is the best use of their time," said Kera Newman.
Newman says she is visiting Ferndale. She says she is surprised to see this sort of rally in the town.
She believes the people who are rallying already have a choice to wear a mask or not.
"Being told that there is a mask mandate? Don’t go inside; order your groceries online, and stay indoors then," she said.
According to data, Whatcom County has seen more 10 confirmed COVID cases, and 109 deaths.
On Wednesday, Gov. Jay Inslee said all public, charter and private school teachers and staff must be fully vaccinated or else risk losing their jobs. The COVID-19 vaccine mandate announced Wednesday includes those working at the state's colleges and universities, including coaches.
Inslee also expanded the statewide indoor mask mandate that is currently in place for non-vaccinated individuals to include those who are vaccinated.
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