Pritzker agrees with CDC on dropping masks for vaccinated Illinoisans
The CDC just revised the mask mandates for those fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Gov. J.B. Pritzker and Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot quickly followed the advice.
Illinoisans have Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s permission to go maskless – in certain settings, and only if you’re at least two weeks out from your second COVID-19 shot.
News that Illinois will follow new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance on masks and social distancing both indoors and outdoors came as Illinois entered Pritzker’s “Bridge Phase” to a full reopening of the state economy. He predicted a full reopening on June 11, but said earlier that mask mandates would remain.
“The governor believes firmly in following the science and intends to revise his executive orders in line with the upcoming CDC guidelines lifting additional mitigations for vaccinated people,” Pritzker spokeswoman Jordan Abudayyeh said. “The scientists’ message is clear: if you are vaccinated, you can safely do much more.”
The CDC removed mask mandates for fully vaccinated people outdoors, even in large gatherings, and in most indoor settings. Crowded indoor settings such as planes, buses, homeless shelters and prisons still require masks for everyone. But workplaces, schools and most other indoor settings can be mask-free – again, for those fully vaccinated.
“We have all longed for this moment — when we can get back to some sense of normalcy,” said Dr. Rochelle Walensky, the director of the CDC.
In Chicago, restaurants, bars and other businesses do not need to include fully vaccinated people against their capacity counts, Mayor Lori Lightfoot said. Both Chicago baseball teams plan to open sections for those fully vaccinated, boosting their total attendance limits.
Nationally, over 46% of the population have received at least one shot and more than 117 million are fully vaccinated. In Illinois, 62% have one shot and 36.5% are fully vaccinated as the COVID-19 seven-day positive test rate was at 2.7%
The Pfizer vaccine on May 12 was approved for ages 12 to 15, which is expected to create a new bump up in vaccinations after the pace had slowed.