The state of Oregon recently moved to require masks in indoor and outdoor settings. The mandate applies to everyone 5-and-older and applies to everyone – whether vaccinated or not. It’s part of the effort there to slow the spread of the delta variant. Now some are wondering in other states, like New York, if a similar mandate is coming their way in the next 2-3 months as delta surges across the entire U.S.
Will masks be mandated again indoors and outdoors this fall or winter?
Masks will be required in schools across New York, according to Governor Kathy Hochul, who said the mandate would go into effect when students went back to school in a matter of weeks. She also outlined a vaccine mandate for employees in schools.
In May, then-Governor Andrew Cuomo lifted the mask mandate in indoor settings across New York. That was when his emergency powers were still in effect. The lifting of the mandate meant that it was up to individual businesses whether ‘proof of vaccination’ would be a requirement to go maskless.
Instead of dealing with that, most businesses opted for the honor system approach.
Health experts warn that if Delta or other variants become so common that hospitals across the board get stressed- that mask mandates could return. There are others who say they would prefer to see those mask mandates regardless of the spread of COVID.
During her first address as governor, Hochul didn’t say whether any such mandate would be pushed. However, unless emergency powers are granted to her, any such move would require lawmakers in Albany to move forward with a bill to mandate it.
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