Leaders and businesses in the US are expressing their discontentment over states lifting mask mandates. The Covid – 19 precautions need more forcefully enforced as variants continue to be concern is what the sentiments share.
This week, Texas and Mississippi also lifted their mask mandates along with other states increasing business capacity and lifting the mandates for residents to wear masks. A representative for Texas Gov. Greg Abbott mentioned that the mandates were no longer necessary, but a refurbishment of livelihoods and normalcy was crucial.
Even though the rates of infections, hospitalizations and deaths have declined in many states since January, still a lot of Americans are being infected daily. What’s more worrying is that transmissible variants have been spreading in the country which is setting in another threatening another threat.
Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear has asked residents to stick the course. He said, “Please continue to wear a mask — what some other states are doing is reckless,”. He further added, “We’ve seen them do it before — they paid the price.”
What’s little assuring is that many businesses are still inspiring mask usage. The grocery store chain H-E-B said on Thursday that employees will still be required and guests will be requested to wear masks. The Texas Restaurant Association will also keep encouraging mask use, along with regular cleanings and health screenings, as said by the association in a release.
“It’s only by working together as operators, employees, customers, and Texans that we can finally turn the page and rebuild out of this pandemic,” its statement quoted.
“We are at a crucial moment in the fight against this disease and the path is unclear,” Greenville Mayor Errick D. Simmons expounded. “We cannot relax. We cannot loosen restrictions. We cannot lift mask mandates. We cannot let our guards down.”
Fauci on the US Pulling back Restrictions
Dr. Anthony Fauci commented the decision by some states to lift the mask mandates and allowing businesses to operate at full capacity was “inexplicable.”
The US shouldn’t loosen restrictions in place to prevent Covid-19 before the number of new coronavirus cases falls under 10,000 daily, “and maybe even considerably less than that,” the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases expressed on Thursday.
The last time the US saw lesser than 10,000 new daily cases was on March 22, 2020, almost an year back. The number hasn’t gone below 50,000 daily cases since mid-October.
“We will be pulling back,” Fauci forecasted. “We’re now up to about 2 million vaccinations per day. That means every day that goes by, every week that goes by, you have more and more people protected.”
Vaccinating Teachers and Reopening Schools Priorty
Many states are expressing their interest on vaccinating teachers and school staff to safely reopen campuses as soon as possible.
There are now 38 states as well as Washington, DC that permit teachers to receive the Covid-19 vaccine. There may be two more that will soon be added to the list.
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker mentioned that those who work in education and childcare will be among the 300,000 to 400,000 new residents who will be qualified for the vaccine next week.
Reinforcing the requirement of safety measures at schools’ end, director Rochelle Walensky said that even with those efforts being taken, it is crucial for school officials to familiarize themselves with school opening guidelines from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It could mean repurposing rooms with more space or moving out classroom furniture so students can be spread out as said by her.