28th July, 2021
U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said on Tuesday that Americans fully vaccinated against COVID-19 should go back to wearing masks in indoor public places.
The rule is stressed in regions where the coronavirus is spreading rapidly,
In a toughening of guidance issued earlier this month, the CDC also recommended all students, teachers and staff at schools for kindergarten through 12th grade wear masks regardless of whether they were vaccinated.
U.S. coronavirus cases have been rising due to the highly contagious Delta variant, which emerged in India but has quickly spread and now accounts for more than 80% of U.S. coronavirus cases.
U.S. President Joe Biden said that increased vaccination and mask wearing would help the United States avoid the pandemic lockdowns, shutdowns and school closures that the country faced in 2020. “We are not going back to that,” Biden said.
The CDC said that 63.4% of U.S. counties had transmission rates high enough to warrant indoor masking and should immediately resume the policy.
Manhattan, Los Angeles and San Francisco meet the transmission criteria, as does the entire state of Florida, but Chicago and Detroit do not.
American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten praised the new CDC mask guidance in a statement, calling it “a necessary precaution until children under 12 can receive a COVID vaccine and more Americans over 12 get vaccinated.”
The CDC’s previous guidance for schools only called for unvaccinated students to wear masks.
However, the new CDC recommendations are not binding and many Americans, especially in Republican-leaning states, may choose not to follow them.
At least eight states bar schools from requiring masks.