Filed Under: Politics

D.C. to lift COVID-19 vaccine and mask mandates

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Less than a month after it went into effect, Washington, D.C. is dropping its COVID-19 vaccine requirement and will soon end its indoor mask requirement. Mayor Muriel Bowser announced the vaccine requirement will end Tuesday, Feb. 15, adding that she believes the vaccine requirement did its job, convincing more people to get vaccinated. Bowser also announced the district’s indoor mask mandate would be modified March 1.

Bowser had previously announced that starting January 15, all people over 12 must show proof of at least partial vaccination to enter most businesses, including entertainment venues, restaurants and gyms. Under the initial order, people must have had both vaccine doses by February 15. With Bower’s decision, that requirement is moot.

“We do believe we got the push out of the vaccine requirement for indoor venues that we’re going to get,” Bowser said.

Businesses may still choose to require vaccinations. Reformation Fitness, with two locations in the district, has required booster shots for clients since the start of 2022. Pitchers, a bar in northwest D.C., also required proof of vaccination to enter well before Bowser’s mandate.

But not everybody in America’s second most liberal city is happy with Bower’s decision.

“The vaccine mandate made it possible for many families, including mine, to feel a little comfort and calmed the anxiety of frontline workers and immunocompromised folks,” D.C. council member Robert C. White tweeted. (White is running for mayor against Bowser.)

“DC’s vaccine mandate lasted about as long as a New Year’s resolution to eat healthier and work out more,” Anna Spiegel, the food editor for Washingtonian Magazine, tweeted.

Bowser also announced the district’s mask mandate will be scaled back starting in March. Masks will still be required on public transportation, schools, and healthcare facilities, but will not be required in other places, including gyms, restaurants and grocery stores.

Jimmie Johnson: MORE COVID-19 MANDATES ARE SET TO EXPIRE.
THIS TIME — IT’S IN THE NATION’S CAPITOL.
WASHINGTON D-C MAYOR MURIEL BOWSER ANNOUNCING MONDAY THEIR MASK MANDATE WILL BE LIFTED IN MOST PUBLIC PLACES BEGINNING MARCH FIRST.
HOWEVER, PLACES LIKE GOVERNMENT FACILITIES, HOSPITALS AND SCHOOLS WILL STILL REQUIRE THAT YOU WEAR A MASK.
IN ADDITION — D-C’S INDOOR VACCINE MANDATE WILL EXPIRE ON TUESDAY.
Mayor Muriel Bowser // (D) Washington, D.C.: “We did see a the height of Omicron with a lot of attention on Omicron, vaccine mandates going in place, more people going out to get vaccinated. But we’ve also seen those numbers start to decline. Se we do believe that we’ve gotten the push out of the vaccine requirement for indoor venues that we’re going to get.”
Jimmie Johnson: THIS ANNOUNCEMENT COMES AMID A NATIONAL DEBATE ON WHETHER ITS TOO SOON TO LIFT RESTRICTIONS.
IN RECENT DAYS, SEVERAL DEMOCRATIC GOVERNORS IN STATES LIKE NEW YORK AND NEW JERSEY HAVE LIFTED MASK MANDATES.
DESPITE THE SENTIMENT SHIFT ON THE STATE LEVEL — THE BIDEN ADMINISTRATION IS HOLDING FIRM ON ITS SUPPORT OF THE C-D-C’S RECOMMENDATION TO REMAIN MASKED IN INDOOR PUBLIC SETTINGS.

Less than a month after it went into effect, Washington, D.C. is dropping its COVID-19 vaccine requirement and will soon end its indoor mask requirement. Mayor Muriel Bowser announced the vaccine requirement will end Tuesday, Feb. 15, adding that she believes the vaccine requirement did its job, convincing more people to get vaccinated. Bowser also announced the district’s indoor mask mandate would be modified March 1.

Bowser had previously announced that starting January 15, all people over 12 must show proof of at least partial vaccination to enter most businesses, including entertainment venues, restaurants and gyms. Under the initial order, people must have had both vaccine doses by February 15. With Bower’s decision, that requirement is moot.

“We do believe we got the push out of the vaccine requirement for indoor venues that we’re going to get,” Bowser said.

Businesses may still choose to require vaccinations. Reformation Fitness, with two locations in the district, has required booster shots for clients since the start of 2022. Pitchers, a bar in northwest D.C., also required proof of vaccination to enter well before Bowser’s mandate.

But not everybody in America’s second most liberal city is happy with Bower’s decision.

“The vaccine mandate made it possible for many families, including mine, to feel a little comfort and calmed the anxiety of frontline workers and immunocompromised folks,” D.C. council member Robert C. White tweeted. (White is running for mayor against Bowser.)

“DC’s vaccine mandate lasted about as long as a New Year’s resolution to eat healthier and work out more,” Anna Spiegel, the food editor for Washingtonian Magazine, tweeted.

Bowser also announced the district’s mask mandate will be scaled back starting in March. Masks will still be required on public transportation, schools, and healthcare facilities, but will not be required in other places, including gyms, restaurants and grocery stores.

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