November 15, 2021 6:00am

Broward Leaders Overwhelming Support Home Rule When It Comes to Masking, Quarantine Decisions

Survey Results: Masking Issues Have Become Too Political

Photo of Sallie James
By Sallie James
Fort Lauderdale, FL Correspondent

Masking students in Broward schools continues to be a politically charged topic in one of the state's bluest counties. Broward leaders who participated in our 15th Fort Lauderdale Power Poll survey expressed strong opposition to a recent court ruling that put masking and quarantining decisions back into the hands of parents. Support was strong for an appeal, evidence of the continued volatility associated with the masking issue as it relates to students.

Our first Power Poll question asked if survey takers agreed with a recent court ruling that said parents should be able to opt their children out of wearing a mask to school or quarantining if exposed to COVID. Concerns have continued to roil about the possible spread of the virus if the most basic safety protocols were made optional. The majority of respondents disagreed with the court ruling, with 20 percent strongly disagreeing and 60 percent disagreeing. Twenty percent of the respondents strongly agreed with the court ruling.

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Our second Power Poll question asked if the mask and quarantine ruling should be appealed. The ruling claims that six school districts, including Broward, overstepped their authority when the mask mandates were put in place. An 80 percent majority of those who answered either agreed or strongly agreed that the court ruling should be challenged. Of those that agreed, 60 percent strongly agreed and 20 percent agreed. The remaining 20 percent were neutral, neither agreeing or disagreeing.

Our third Power Poll question asked if the six Florida school districts, including Broward, should be fined by the State of Florida for making masks mandatory in schools. Everyone who answered this questions said "no," with 60 percent of the respondents strongly disagreeing, and 40 percent disagreeing.

Our fourth and final Power Poll question focused on politics in a pandemic. We asked our survey takers if the masking requirements had been overly politicized. The answer was a resounding "yes," with 40 percent of the respondents strongly agreeing, 40 percent agreeing and 20 percent disagreeing.

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