Illinois mask mandate to be eased after CDC guidance, Pritzker says

Illinois mask mandate to be eased after CDC guidance, Pritzker says


Gov. JB Pritzker plans to relax his statewide mask mandate after federal health officials said Thursday mask-wearing is not necessary in most places for people who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

That announcement on Friday from the Illinois Department of Public Health didn’t say when or how the governor’s executive orders would be changed after new guidance issued Thursday by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Springfield officials said they would stop enforcing the city’s mask mandate in light of the CDC and state’s position. Springfield’s mask mandate was implemented in 2020 and came with potential fines for individuals and businesses.

The state health department, an agency controlled by the Democratic governor, said in a statement: “The governor believes firmly in following the science and will be delighted to revise his executive orders in line with the CDC guidance lifting additional mitigations for vaccinated people. The scientists’ message is clear: If you are vaccinated, you can safely do much more.”

Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker

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The statement from Springfield city officials said, “The city will follow the medical guidance provided.”

However, the statement included a recommendation for the public to continue wearing masks in certain public situations.

“Right now, with businesses serving the public, there is no way for them to know who has received their vaccination and who has not,” the statement said. “This makes it difficult to keep businesses and their employees safe while serving the public. That is why we respectfully recommend people to continue to wear a mask, practice good hand hygiene and keep social distance.”

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