New York City Mayor Eric Adams (D) officially announced the end of some coronavirus restrictions on Friday after it was reported earlier in the week that he would likely do so.
The vaccine passport system for gyms, restaurants, and entertainment areas will end on Monday, along with K-12 school mask requirements. Adams spoke in Times Square and said New York City is ready to get past COVID-19 rules that have negatively impacted the city’s economy over the past two years.
“This is clearly an Arnold Schwarzenegger moment,” Adams said, per Politico. “We’ll be back.”
He pointed to the city’s vaccination rate and low amount of new COVID-19 cases as reasons for getting rid of the requirements.
“The rates are low enough that the mandatory program is no longer needed,” he said. “Those few that it’s gonna take a while, I understand it. But the overwhelming number of New Yorkers are ready.”
“It’s time to open our city, and get the economy back operating,” he said.
“Folks can come in and enjoy the restaurants, the businesses and be a part of this great city without having to show proof of vaccination,” Adams added.
He noted that businesses can still make people show proof of vaccination.
K-12 public schools will also be free of indoor mask requirements for faculty, staff, and students.
“We want to see the faces of our children,” Adams said.
However, students who are under the age of five will still have to wear masks because they can’t get a vaccine yet, Adams noted, claiming that they are more likely to have a dangerous illness if they get COVID-19.
As Spectrum News NY 1 reported, “Adams said that positivity rates in schools, at 0.18%, were low enough to allow for the end of the mask mandate, but said that the science did not support ending the mask requirement for students under five years old.”
“I’d rather have people complaining against me than us losing our babies in our city,” Adams said.
NYC Public Schools announced on Twitter, “The indoor mask mandate is still active for children in LYFE, EarlyLearn (Infants & Toddlers), 3-K, Pre-K, and 4410 classrooms. These children, ages two years old and older, and all staff in these classrooms, must continue to wear a face covering indoors.”
It also posted, “there are no requirements for social distancing in public spaces, including classrooms, cafeterias, and auditoriums.”
The teachers union also responded to the news.
“This is the responsible, thoughtful way to make our next transition,” United Federation of Teachers President Michael Mulgrew said in a statement, per Politico. “We will, however, keep our testing program in place — both in-school and the take-home tests — to make sure we remain on the right path.”
The outgoing city health commissioner, Dave Chokshi, reportedly spoke before the mayor and outlined a new COVID-19 risk level system.
This is an excerpt from The Daily Wire.
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