Police called to North Kingstown School Committee meeting over masks
NORTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. (WLNE) – The North Kingstown School Committee meeting was adjourned early Tuesday evening after a chaotic scene broke out regarding masks.
Chairman of the School Committee, Gregory Blasbalg, called it a “chaotic and potentially dangerous atmosphere”. He said several people in the audience refused to wear masks, spoke loudly over speakers, threw objects, and took over the microphone without being recognized.
During the meeting, which was streamed live on the North Kingstown School Committee’s YouTube page, Blasbalg asks several times for people in the audience to put their masks on, citing the Governor’s mandate for mask-wearing inside schools.
“We’ve asked a couple people to leave who were not wearing masks. At this point we do have two people in the room who are not wearing masks,” Blasbalg said. “As we mentioned before, we won’t be able to continue the meeting until people are complying with the issue mandated by the Governor regarding wearing a mask in school.”
People in the audience yelled out citing “Medical Disabilities Act”, “medical exemption”, and “religious exemption”. One person was heard saying, “If she was eating, would it be okay?”
After several attempts, the Chairman voted to call an end to the meeting saying in a statement to ABC 6 News, “the members of the school committee felt that it was not safe for the meeting to continue, so we voted to adjourn.”
The North Kingstown Police Department was called to the high school to assist with dispersing the crowd. According to police, no arrests were made.