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Montevideo, May 22nd 2022 - 01:47 UTC



US health authorities insist on mask-wearing on public transport

Wednesday, May 4th 2022 - 09:15 UTC
Full article
The last mask-wearing mandate expired May 3 The last mask-wearing mandate expired May 3

Despite a court ruling last month declaring mask-wearing mandates unconstitutional, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Tuesday issued once again a recommendation to restate the measure on planes, trains, and buses.

Americans aged 2 and older should wear a well-fitting mask when riding public transportation, even at airports and train stations, the CDC advised citing ”available data, including an understanding of domestic and global epidemiology, circulating variants and their impact on disease severity and vaccine effectiveness, current trends in COVID-19 Community Levels within the United States, and projections of COVID-19 trends in the coming months.”

The federal government has repeatedly extended the mandate. The last one was to expire May 3, but a judge in Florida struck down the rule April 18, after which the CDC asked the Department of Justice (DOJ) to appeal the court's decision.

The DOJ last month filed notice it will appeal the ruling and it has until May 31 to do so. But the government has made no effort to seek immediate court action to restate the mandate.

“The appeal concerns whether the CDC has the authority to (require masks) in this pandemic or in any pandemic, which is completely distinct from whether a mask mandate ought to be applied any given day,” Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said Tuesday at a Senate hearing.

Hours after the April 18 ruling, the Biden administration said it would no longer enforce the mask mandate, which prompted airlines to let passengers end wearing masks mid-flight. According to reports, 10% or fewer air travelers are wearing masks.

Tags: CDC.

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