Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont (D) will not say when he will lift the state’s mask mandate, suggesting Thursday that it may remain in place until “we have real herd immunity.”
While the Constitution State will lift all business restrictions on May 19, the mask mandate is expected to remain in place. During a press conference Thursday, Lamont failed to say when he would move to lift the mandate.
“So far what I’ve heard is let’s not have any ambiguity while you’re indoors until we have real herd immunity,” Lamont said. “I think it’s safer to make sure that everybody is wearing their mask indoors.”
Connecticut’s mask requirement has remained in place since last year. The current rule requires masks or cloth face coverings “to be worn when in public and a six-foot distance is unavoidable, whether indoors or outdoors.” The order, however, exempts those with certain medical conditions.
This week, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) director Rochelle Walensky responded to questions over mask guidance with the same level of ambiguity.
When asked how much longer officials will recommend universal masking, Walensky said it is “difficult to say,” depending largely on getting a “large enough percentage of the population vaccinated”:
Congratulations on being fully vaccinated! You should always wear a mask over your nose & mouth when in public settings, incl. public transportation. Until we get a large enough percentage of the population vaccinated, it would be difficult to say when we can stop wearing a mask. https://t.co/GYOBBdbSAx
— Rochelle Walensky, MD, MPH (@CDCDirector) April 22, 2021
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has also failed to give a specific answer on when public health officials will recommend phasing out masks, noting it is “possible” Americans could find themselves continuing to wear them into the new year.
States without mask mandates, such as Florida and Texas, continue to report fewer new cases of the Chinese coronavirus per capita than blue pro-mask areas such as New York, Pennsylvania, and Michigan, according to CDC data.