According to media sources, on Wednesday, the governors of New York and Illinois will announce the conclusion of or a plan to scale down specific Covid-19 mitigation requirements involving masks.
According to three persons briefed on the decision, New York Governor Kathy Hochul will remove the state’s strict business regulations on Wednesday.
According to the regulation, customers must provide proof of vaccination or wear masks indoors, except when eating or drinking. According to News station WLS, the Chicago Tribune, and the Chicago Sun-Times, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker are scheduled to reveal a plan on Wednesday to abolish the state’s indoor mask rule in most public areas while keeping mask regulations in schools. Both Democratic governors’ offices have been contacted for comment on their intentions.
The reports come at a time when the Omicron wave that recently swept the United States is starting to subside, leading several state officials to reduce their Covid-19 mitigation efforts.
One day before the state’s business mask rules were set to expire, Hochul said in New York on Tuesday that she expected to announce them on Wednesday.
The Omicron variety
Because the Omicron strain caused a significant increase in Covid-19 cases, hospitalizations, and fatalities, Hochul imposed the mask-or-vaccine requirement for all indoor businesses in December 2021. The latest rise in new cases peaked around a month ago and has since subsided. “When we first detected the early signs that this Omicron may be quite contagious,” she noted, the vaccine or mask requirement for businesses was implemented.
“It was evident that this was the case, and as a result, we implemented various protections to benefit our workplaces, workers, and consumers,” she continued.
Pritzker has hinted at changes to the laws around wearing masks indoors.
Pritzker, the governor of Illinois, has recently hinted at changes to his state’s indoor mask regulations.
“I believe I have mentioned in past press conferences that I believe we should really study how to pull it back. I expect we will make an announcement about it soon.” Pritzker responded to reporters’ concerns about the mandate at a second press conference on Tuesday.