New Orleans Mayor Pictured Violating Her City’s Mask Mandate at Indoor Party

By Isabel van Brugen
Isabel van Brugen
Isabel van Brugen
Reporter
Isabel van Brugen is an award-winning journalist and currently a news reporter at The Epoch Times. She holds a master's in newspaper journalism from City, University of London.
February 22, 2022 Updated: February 22, 2022

New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell was photographed at an indoor party without wearing a mask on Friday, violating her own mask mandate for the city.

The Democratic mayor reinstated the city’s indoor mask mandate on Jan. 11, citing a surge in COVID-19 cases driven by the Omicron variant of the novel coronavirus. The mandate applies to all indoor public settings, including schools, and will remain in effect through Mardi Gras Day on March 1.

But she was seen maskless at the Mayor’s Mardi Gras Ball at Gallier Hall on Friday, Fox News reported, noting that 100 short videos taken at the event and posted online were deleted shortly after the outlet made inquiries.

Cantrell and two other maskless women were seen in the videos, taken by a 360-degree photo booth, weeks after the city’s indoor mask mandate was reinstated.

The Epoch Times has reached out to the mayor’s office for comment.

Beau Tidwell, a spokesman for the mayor, told Fox News that there was not a “perfect adoption of the guidelines in every instance” at the event.

Tidwell said the city’s indoor mask mandate will remain in effect until March 1, as originally planned.

“That has not changed and it will not change. Under the current guidelines, masks may be removed indoors while eating and drinking,” he said.

“While we did not see perfect adoption of the guidelines in every instance over the weekend, we were encouraged overall by the level of masking and vigilance we saw on the parade route and at ball events,” added Tidwell.

The revelations were met with criticism on social media with some pointing out that the mayor’s conduct amounts to hypocrisy.

“Rules for thee, but not for me,” said Glenn Jacobs, Republican mayor of Knox County, Tennessee since 2018.

Canary CEO Dan. K. Eberhart wrote, “Add another Democrat to the ever-growing list of hypocrite politicians demanding people follow rules that they themselves don’t.”

Cantrell in July last year issued an advisory telling people they should wear masks indoors, citing a surge in COVID-19 cases in the state. That came two months after the city lifted its mask mandate.

Everyone was asked to wear a mask indoors when with people who are not members of their immediate family.

Cantrell said at the time that instead of an indoor mask mandate, the indoor mask advisory is “putting more responsibility on residents in our community that have yet to be vaccinated.”

The mayor has yet to publicly respond to the reports that she violated her own city’s mask mandate.

On Monday night, she posted photographs on Twitter from the city’s signature Mardi Gras parades.

“Its my absolute pleasure to say that after a one-year hiatus, Mardi Gras returned to the streets of NOLA,” she wrote.

“All Hail each Krewe who have paraded before us this weekend. Also, a huge thank you to all of our public safety members who were able to ensure that we rolled safely!”

Isabel van Brugen
Isabel van Brugen is an award-winning journalist and currently a news reporter at The Epoch Times. She holds a master's in newspaper journalism from City, University of London.