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"We have to work together to fight this" | Knoxville mayor urges people to wear masks, get vaccinated against COVID-19

Knoxville Mayor Indya Kincannon commended businesses and venues that are requiring masks, as COVID-19 cases continue to rise in East Tennessee.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — During a city council meeting on Tuesday, Knoxville Mayor Indya Kincannon urged the community to work together and prevent the spread of COVID-19.

She said that there have been 1,100 new cases since last Thursday in Knox County. As of Tuesday, the Knox County Health Department reported 3,650 active cases of COVID-19.

She said that people across the area needed to fight back against the coronavirus by getting vaccinated and wearing masks, in order to prevent the number of cases across the area from getting higher.

"This is a really frightening increase in COVID in our community, and I appreciate everyone who is following the CDC and the City of Knoxville and the community's best health practices," Kincannon said during the meeting. "We have to work together to fight this."

She also applauded venues and businesses that were requiring masks as a way to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Most cases were reported from people in the 37918 and 37920 zip codes, according to the health department. Officials also said more kids were getting sick from COVID-19 in Knox County, compared to the previous wave of cases.

In Knox County alone, the state department of health reported an additional 643 new cases among people 5 to 18 years old in the past week. That's significantly higher than the previous weekly high of 446 last winter.