TIPPECANOE COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) - Calls for social justice have been heard through the streets of downtown Lafayette the last three evenings, but health officials like Tippecanoe County Health Officer Dr. Jeremy Adler are seeing possible health concerns with the peaceful protests.
"Any time there is a large gathering of people where social distancing is difficult, where many individuals are not wearing masks, there is of course a risk of transmission of the coronavirus,” said Adler.
Dr. Adler says people should distance themselves during protests to help limit the spread of COVID-19.
"If you are at one of these events and it's possible to socially distance that of course is the ideal thing to do,” said Adler.
As of Wednesday, Tippecanoe County has 421 confirmed cases of coronavirus.
Thomas Sors with Purdue's Institute of Inflammation, Immunology and Infectious Disease said wearing a mask to such events will help limit the spread of the disease.
"Their breaths as they're maybe speaking and yelling, some of those activities, are increasing the risk of secondary infection,” said Sors.
Sors said there should be a balance between keep each other safe and being heard.
“It's important for these protesters to have their voices heard, but if you are going to go out there to protest to make sure that you are protecting yourselves. Making sure that you are protecting those around you,” said Sors.
Adler says those who attended a protest should monitor themselves for any symptoms and to contact their health care provider if any symptoms develop.