Good Morning America anchor George Stephanopoulos seemingly ignored a statewide executive order mandating people to wear face coverings during a recent stroll in East Hampton. In an image obtained by Page Six, the ABC News anchor, who tested positive for the coronavirus earlier this month but was asymptomatic, was spotted chatting on his phone with his face mask hanging around his neck.
Snapped Monday, Stephanopoulos reportedly left his Hamptons home and embarked on a mile-long walk along East Hampton lanes, his mask hanging from is neck the entire time. Although Stephanopoulos seemed to be adhering to social distancing guidelines at the time, with no other people seen in the snapshot, it still irked some residents.
"For somebody who reports on the pandemic every day, and is broadcasting guidelines about safe social distancing, George didn't really seem to care. He was on his own, walking through the lanes and past East Hampton Guild Hall, on his cellphone the whole time, yakking with his mask around his neck," one resident claimed. "He tested positive, his wife tested positive, why can't he follow the local mandates to wear a mask in public, why can’t he just stay home?"
Stephanopoulos' decision to forego the face covering goes against a recent executive order issued by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Going into effect on April 17, all New York residents must wear a face covering when out in public. The town of East Hampton website reminds people of that mandate, noting that "everyone must wear a face covering when in public if they are not practicing social distancing. The mandate to maintain a safe 'social distance' of at least six feet remains in effect." The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has also recommended the use of face coverings.
This marks just the latest incident controversial incident regarding Stephanopoulos. After his wife Ali Wentworth tested positive for the virus, announcing her diagnosis on April 1, some Hamptons residents slammed him for not adhering to social distancing guidelines. According to residents, Stephanopoulos, who had claimed he was forced to come into contact with his wife to help care for her, took a trip to a drugstore on April 10 and walked his dog on a private golf course. Just three days later, he would announced that he, too, had tested positive for the virus but was asymptomatic.
Stephanopoulos has since recovered from the virus. In a Tuesday morning tweet, the GMA co-anchor revealed that he had "tested positive for Covid antibodies" and would be donating plasma to help those currently fighting the virus.