Mayor Turner on decrease in people wearing masks in Houston: 'It's unfortunate'

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner says the number of positive COVID-19 cases in Houston has now surpassed 6,000 as more businesses plan to reopen in Texas by the end of the week.

During a briefing on the city's COVID-19 response efforts on Wednesday, Turner announced 146 new cases, bringing the total case count to 6,047.

The city's death toll now stands at 119, which includes two additional deaths.

Moments after Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announced on Monday additional reopenings that included bars and professional sports, Turner quickly warned Houstonians to remain alert and aware. That was also top of mind during Wednesday's briefing.

"As more people return to work, to the gym and restaurants, we are increasing public access to COVID-19 mobile testing sites, and before the month is out, we will have 24 testing sites across the city of Houston," said Turner.

Throughout the briefing, Turner emphasized his push to wear masks. Though he said he's noticed a decrease in participation, he wants people to remember the virus is still out there.

"People aren't wearing them as much, which is unfortunate," said Turner. "We wear them to protect other people from ourselves. The purpose of wearing the face covering is to protect other people from you, especially when you are out and about around other individuals. Combined with engaging in social distancing, all of those things will help to reduce spread of this dreadful virus."

Abbott released a list of Texas businesses on Monday that are allowed to open, including bars, child care centers and more.

READ MORE: Texas allows bars to open Friday under Phase II

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