Mask mandates across states are expiring & school mask requirements are being lifted

We may be heading out of the “full-blown pandemic stage” as Dr. Fauci has stated, but hospitals are still full with covid patients and there are over 2,000 people dying of covid in the US every day. The community transmission rate remains high across the US. The fact that even the more cautious states with Democratic governors are letting mask mandates expire soon blows my mind. Several states are also lifting mask mandates for schools. Meanwhile the CDC, which has made obvious missteps during the pandemic, continues to recommend indoor mask wearing. Here’s more, from NPR:

New York is lifting part of its indoor mask mandate, joining a growing list of states that are making similar adjustments.

Gov. Kathy Hochul announced at a briefing Wednesday that the statewide vaccine-or-mask requirement for businesses will end on Thursday, though masks will still be required in schools and some other places where people congregate, including health care facilities, shelters and public transit stations. Counties, cities and businesses can still choose to require masks, she added…

Hochul also said the state will reevaluate the mask mandate for schools in early March.

In a virtual meeting Tuesday, Hochul discussed the statewide school mask mandate with state and school officials and organizations.

“We certainly understand the frustration that a number of parents are articulating about the mask mandates that exist throughout the country,” said Jay Worona, the general counsel for the New York State School Boards Association. “We are hoping that all the decisions that are going fall into place are going to be consistent with what science and metrics are telling us.”

New Jersey, Connecticut, Delaware, Oregon and California have all announced plans this week to lift their indoor mask mandates in February and March, pointing to the dramatic drop in daily new COVID-19 cases as the omicron surge recedes.

The move is being welcomed by some as a sign that states are learning to live with the virus, though it goes against Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance encouraging universal mask-wearing in schools. It also comes as high-quality masks are, at least theoretically, more accessible to all Americans.

[From NPR]

The mask mandate has been lifted in my state, Virginia, since May of last year, but I’ve never seen consistent mask wearing in my area. The idiotic new governor issued an executive order allowing parents to opt out school mask requirements and that’s about to become law. Children under five still can’t be vaccinated! I’m just tired and so disappointed in people. At some point early in the pandemic I naively believed that the US would adopt mask wearing like some Asian countries, and that we would get a handle on this pandemic. Instead we have the highest death rate in the world because of selfish a-holes, Republicans and misinformation. ‘Merica. To everyone who is immune compromised, who has vulnerable loved ones, who has children under five or who has lost loved ones, I’m so sorry. I will wear a mask in public for the rest of my life.

Photos credit: Rodnae Productions, Ketut Subiyanto on Pexels, Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash.

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

66 Responses to “Mask mandates across states are expiring & school mask requirements are being lifted”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

  1. Tiffany:) says:

    60,000 COVID deaths in the US in January 2022. It seems like people are ready for it to be over, before it’s actually over.

    • Mary Tosti says:

      It’s sad really. People would rather have others get sick, extremely sick, or possibly die than wear a mask while they are in public. Selfish.

    • ME says:

      Honestly, how is it going to be over when the same mistakes keep being made?

    • olliesmom says:

      Yes. Just because we decide that it’s over doesn’t mean that it’s over. I hope that this doesn’t come back around and bite us in the butt.

      What will they cry and protest about if we don’t have to wear masks anymore?

      • I am one of the many, many invisible ones (see also-the Disabled, the immunocompromised, caregivers of either, parents of babies, etc, etc.etc. ) who this will affect. I am on year three of endometriosis so horrific I can’t stand, but I can’t get an operation to get it all out because THERE IS NOT ENOUGH BLOOD IN THE FREAKING HOSPITALS. They are out of supplies because of supply chain issues, doctors are being asked to work nurse shifts because of nurse shortages, there is no room in ICU, and god forbid something bad happened to me during the operation or I needed specialized care, there would be no room at the hospital.

        It’s sheer insanity giving up the masks when even a “mild’ case of covid can leave you with long term LIFETIME health affects to your vascular system, your brain, etc. etc. etc. We are living in upside-down land. I’m so exhausted from rage and incomprehension.

  2. Mary Tosti says:

    My kids will still be wearing masks. My son as asthma and I have an autoimmune disease so we aren’t taking chances. My kids don’t really fuss about the mask wearing because we’re all just used to it now.
    Even if public places in my city aren’t requiring masks I’m still gonna wear it. Better to be safe and it’s really not that big of a deal to wear one.

    • Emma says:

      I feel the same. Not just for myself but for everyone who’s immunocompromised or has comorbidities or is elderly, I will keep masking. This really seems too soon and against CDC guidance??? Why? Idk if it’s the upcoming elections or what. (I’m in Illinois and Pritzker is up for re-election.)

    • Truthiness says:

      Great parenting. My son’s half sister is 12 and she caught covid in December (had only 1 vax) and she caught it again in January (was double vaxxed). Tell me again how natural immunity keeps you safe. The schools are just large petri dishes at this point. God help us if it develops a new variant at schools because of the viruses given so many millions of times to replicate and mutate.

  3. ME says:

    This is the reason we’ve been in and out of so many waves and lockdowns. People are way too eager to get back to “normal”. It’s not time yet. Be patient for f*cks sake. We have all had enough but getting rid of masks should be the LAST thing to go…and it shouldn’t be any time soon.

    • olliesmom says:

      People are living in a right now society and they expect things quickly and right now.

      And then there are those who have denied it all along………..

      Some experts believe that the Spanish Flu pandemic that started in 1918 actually lasted until 1920. And that was in a world where we weren’t flying all over the globe. A much smaller and isolated world. So how do they expect it to be “over” in a little over two years (actually started in late 2019 because I know people who had it then and didn’t know what it was)?

    • Kitten says:

      People who can’t handle wearing a mask at this stage are people who have likely never worn one. My fiance and I have been wearing them for two years and we will continue to do so in indoor spaces.

      This country has always been full of an astonishing amount of selfish people.

      • Christine says:

        This is the part that puzzles me about people demanding mask mandates ending for schools. My son is 12, he is so used to wearing a mask, it’s not even a thought. He is more likely to forget his computer than his mask, when packing his backpack, because he’s been wearing a mask since March 2020, and has only had a computer for school this year.

        I cannot be convinced there are any kids left, at this point, who give a shit that they are wearing a mask. This is all parents being assholes.

    • Tiffany:) says:

      If everyone had worn masks and gotten vaccinated, this would have been over so much quicker. Collectively, we just don’t have the maturity to do what is right. The US has a special affection for the contrarian, “I do what I want, screw everyone else” mentality, and it has really hurt us over the past 3 years. Those people will never admit it, though.

  4. lunchcoma says:

    People in my immediate area were pretty good about mask wearing…until the county mandate expired recently. I suspect a lot of my neighbors are the kind of people who mandates work well for – they mostly follow the rules and don’t want to be seen as rude, but they’re not going to work to uphold norms on their own.

    Anyway, I get why people are tired of masks, but I think it would have been wise for places that already had mandates to keep them a month or so longer. Maybe wait until there’s truly a decrease in cases and healthcare workers have had a minute to breathe, rather than lifting everything at the first sign things have peaked.

  5. Escargot says:

    As a parent in one of the states listed, where in-school masking will be lifted in March, I am so torn.

    I am not by any means anti-mask. But I have a four year old and I want her to go to school and see the whole faces of her friends for the first time. This started when she was 2 and I have longed for normalcy for her with all my heart.

    My older child had five years of normal life before this started and it’s easier for him. But for both kids, attending school and seeing faces will be amazing.

    Yet it’s so worrying. And if it was up to me I would keep waiting and waiting. We all had covid over the holidays, after being extremely cautious as a family and making all the sacrifices we could, we got it and we recovered and now I feel like taking off masks in school is both scary and exciting. I don’t know what the future holds but I want my kids to have some normalcy.

    • Lizzbert says:


    • indywom says:

      As a substitute teacher who saw COVID roll through my classes like a freight train for a couple of week. This is with a mask mandate in place. Not only did kids get it but a teacher on my team also came down with it. I understand people want to get back to normal but you can’t do that until this disease is under some control. How do you make up two weeks of lost instruction when more than half of the class is absent and you have teachers out with no subs? Students have lost almost two years but it is better if they are in a classroom. If that means wearing a mask a little longer, then we are all going to have to suck it up. We are literally wearing down teachers and when you have the people near retirement with one foot out the door and the ones who are just a few years in plotting their exits, parents are in for a world of hurt when your children have no teachers because we are past crisis mode. I understand people want kids to return to normal, teachers want that too but we don’t want to put our loved ones at risk. Hearing a co-worker talk about the long term impact of COVID on her body should scare everyone. Sure you might recover but you might not. How many of you are ready to roll the dice.

      • Tiffany:) says:

        “How do you make up two weeks of lost instruction when more than half of the class is absent and you have teachers out with no subs?”

        Great point. Mass infection (of students and teachers) has consequences on learning.

      • Amanda says:

        @indywom “If that means wearing masks a little longer….” Can I ask when is long enough though? Covid is now endemic. Its not going away. We have vaccines and treatment. At some point, that needs to be enough. I have a 5 year old that started school during this mess and she is still wearing a mask at school but I can’t even imagine what this does developmentally to not be able to see faces and read lips when one is learning to read and learning about socializing. I think at some point enough is enough. Everyone is free to wear a mask, vaccinate, boost and stay home as they see fit. I really wish they would roll out the covid pill. Didn’t Pfizer come out with an early treatment type anti viral? Thats what is really going to get us out of this mess. Early treatment.

      • Tiffany:) says:

        Amanda, why are you asking indywom when is long enough? No one has an idea of what variants are ahead of us. 60,000 people died last month from COVID, so clearly it is still a threat to many people.

        If you worry about your child and socializing, create a pod of other families that are vaccinated and have outdoor play dates without masks. That way you get what you want for your child, but you aren’t asking teachers or vulnerable children to sacrifice themselves for your needs.

      • Becks1 says:

        @Amanda – no, the vaccines are what are going to get us out of this mess, but we have people refusing to get them, still. If you look at numbers – for example in my state, our positivity rate in January went up to 30%ish, maybe more. And our hospitalizations also drastically increased. But it was still something like 2% of the people in the hospitals were vaccinated. This is STILL, like Biden said, a pandemic of the unvaccinated. Its just that it seems like the vaccinated people are the ones who still care.

        and I get it – my boys are in elementary school, my youngest was in kindergarten last year and spent half the year learning through a screen. It wasn’t ideal. So I would rather he be in school, in a mask, knowing I’m keeping him as safe as possible and that he is keeping those around him as safe as possible.

    • Christine says:

      Kids are SO adaptable. They don’t see a face with a mask on, they see their FRIENDS.

  6. Nicegirl says:

    I’m terribly worried about the lifting of the mask mandates. My household will not be removing masks outside of our home. I think it’s too soon.

  7. PunkyMomma says:

    I’m not taking off my mask. Antivaxxers are all around—we’ve hadn’t had a mask mandate for over a year. A family member (unvaxxed) is recovering from a fourth bout of COVID—each bout worse than the last. As long as there is such a large contingency of unvaxxed people, this thing will continue to mutate and kill people, both the unvaxxed as well as those with serious health issues.

    • Tiffany:) says:

      Wow, 4 rounds of COVID!?! That sounds horrible.

      I keep hearing people talk about “natural immunity”, but I know someone who go it in September and December, so the natural immunity must fade pretty quickly.

      • KC says:

        I know someone who got it twice within a month!🥴. I’m a teacher and know if two parents at our school who get it twice in a month.😕

      • Tiffany:) says:

        Twice in the same month!!! WOW! I don’t doubt you, but I had no idea that could happen! There’s still so much we don’t know, especially with the way the virus mutates and changes.

        Thank you for keeping me humble and cognizant of the fact that there’s so much I do not know.

  8. Nadeni says:

    VA girl here too. I’m so disappointed in our state at the moment and who is now our gov. I knew these changes would happen when Trump2.0 was elected but dude couldn’t wait to appease his fellow trumpers and literally made it the first thing he did as gov to get rid of masks in school. Thankfully my county was like nope, everyone is still wearing masks in schools. Now they might not have a choice. But my kids do and my teens want to keep wearing masks. Also, I would say the majority of people are still wearing masks here out and about in stores, depending on the store and it’s typical customer.

  9. Becks1 says:

    My state hasn’t had an indoor mask mandate in….a while, I can’t remember, but some counties around me impose one based on the variants and numbers etc.

    basically our governor, a Republican, is trying to “both sides” the pandemic….he started off very good IMO in 2020 and now he’s kind of like “meh, I want to run for president in 2024 so I can’t piss off these right wing aholes too much.” He is SUPER pro vax though which at least is something, more than a lot of R governors I guess. And I think he is in an easier place bc he knows the state will kind of take care of things for him – like the state board of ed passed the mask mandate for schools in september, so while I know he thinks it was the right choice, he can also say “oh what could I do, the board of ed made that call, not me.” But in December and January when our hospitals were flooded and the positivity rate was through the roof he refused to put another mask mandate in place and honestly he should have, even for a month or so.

    Anyway so…..I’m not sure how I feel about schools potentially removing mask mandates here. Maybe if they require proof of vaccination first? I know that will go over like a lead balloon, but it would be something.

    • Becks1 says:

      oh FFS, our governor just posted on FB that he’s calling on the board of ed to rescind the school masking policy. Like I said, he has his eye on 2024.

      • Meghan says:

        My son is 5 and goes to daycare and I dont think they even know he is fully vaccinated. We live in a super red state so maybe they feel like they can’t ask for proof? They have his updated state records but not his Covid card. And I don’t think they’ve required masks for kids since he started in June (adults picking up the kids have to wear them though which i am totally fine with)

        The weirdest thing is that I still get updates from his MDO program he went to last year and they’re getting kids testing positive ALL the time, but his daycare hasn’t had a single instance? They did send out some info in December about classes possibly having to quarantine but I realized that would be if the teachers were out sick because they can’t combine the classes.

      • Becks1 says:

        I don’t think schools can require it yet (or ask about it) bc its only emergency authorization use still for kids. I wonder if when it is fully approved school districts will start requiring the vaccine like they do for other things like chicken pox, pertussis etc.

      • Popsicle W says:

        Luckily, where I live, mask-wearing has always been high and continues to be. Most sit-down restaurants require proof of vaccination and they are requiring kids to be vaccinated by March. I am thrilled. But I am so disheartened by the lack of collective responsibility in this country. I have immune-compromised family members and friends and lost two people to Covid. Mask wearing isn’t that hard people!!

      • Becks1 says:

        @Popsicle that’s my thing! Mask-wearing isn’t hard! Showing your vaccine card to eat at a restaurant or whatever isn’t hard! Do I love wearing masks? No. But i would rather do that and still be able to do maybe 75% of the things that I love doing (sorry, buffets, cruising and a few other things….you may be out permanently for me, lol) then be back where we were two years ago.

        I don’t think wearing a mask means I’m “living in fear.” I think it means that I’ve learned how to live with COVID and one of the ways is to wear a mask.

      • Tiffany:) says:

        This is so well written, I’m going to post it again. I think it is THE point to this whole mess. Thank you for stating it so clearly!

        “I don’t think wearing a mask means I’m “living in fear.” I think it means that I’ve learned how to live with COVID and one of the ways is to wear a mask.”

  10. Jamie says:

    If the cloth masks are not working (so the CDC said a month or so ago), then why wear them? If the N-95 masks work the best, why didn’t they hand these out in the beginning instead of having people buy masks from all over the place? There isn’t any place in my town where you can pick up or buy the N-95 masks. There is so much flip-flopping of what should and should not be done about wearing a mask and what type to wear, people are getting whiplash.

    • SJP-NYC says:

      I do hate it when all cloth masks are lumped together. There is a wide range which is the issue, but there are some high quality cloth masks (3 or 4 layers) that are excellent in covering almost the entire nose with few gaps. Yes, 1 or 2 layer masks and those stupid fitted masks where the nose is mostly exposed are not sufficient any more.

      • Tanya says:

        Right. My kid uses Vogmasks, which are cloth but have a full filtration layer. She just likes the fit better.

      • nutellatoast says:

        They said they weren’t as effective – not that they didn’t work at all. We’ve exclusively worn cloth masks and 3 of our 4 household members haven’t had COVID yet, and we go to school and work in VERY public spaces with a lot of interaction. We have good-quality, well-fitting ones and sometimes double up. I’m sure it will find our household eventually, but every day without it is another day that scientists learn something and have a better response and it’s another day that my exhausted nursing friends don’t have to take care of me or my household in the hospital. We will continue to mask. My kid seriously doesn’t even notice anymore. (And I share the same idiot VA governor…I just…can’t with him.)

    • Tanya says:

      “in the beginning,” N95s were in such short supply that doctors and nurses were re-using them. States were literally fighting over them, and the Trump administration was literally confiscating them at the airport. It made no sense to recommend them then because you couldn’t get them anyway. As recently as early January, many masks were backordered for weeks. Now, it’s pretty straightforward to order them online and there’s plenty in stock.

      Cloth masks do provide some benefits, especially if everyone is masked. N95s/KN95s/KF94s work to protect you even if others aren’t masking. They also work great for filtering out pollution and pollen. That’s why so many California companies were stockpiling them even pre-COVID in case of wildfires.

      • Twin Falls says:

        I’ve yet to find a kn95 that fits my face.

        I’m in WA and apparently our outdoor mask requirement has been lifted but I didn’t even know we had one. I think it was for extra large gathering maybe.

        The anti-maskers are feeling BOLD. We’re pretty blue in my area so it’s a small group but lately they are really ramping things up. I hate it all the divisiveness and what seems like absolute rage over wearing a mask. I don’t get it.

      • Korra says:

        I have been exclusively using KF94s and KN95s since fall. Only two brands fit my face appropriately: (1) Dr. Puri KF94s in medium and (2) Powecom KN95s. But I have still managed to rotate through a few different brands of each mask because I have also bought mask loop adjusters to make almost every brand I have purchased fit my face. You can find two kinds on Amazon: the ones that tighten the mask ear loops and the ones that allow you to tighten the mask at the back of your head, mimicking the type of seal that a real N95 creates. I would recommend trying them out if you want to protect yourself while other people start to drop masking.

      • Tiffany:) says:

        Well said, Tanya.

      • FancyPants says:

        We’re still reusing them! You’re supposed to use your N95 for a week here, with another paper mask over it, and you can get a replacement sooner if it is “visibly soiled.”

      • JJS says:

        Am in BC Canada and I can’t find N95s in stock, if you can its very sporadically. I don’t know whether its better to be reusing ( 🙁 ) or going back to cloth, for my kids…

  11. Pavoreal says:

    Long time lurker here. I live in Costa Rica and we still have mask mandates, especially since the school year is starting. It’s just WILD to me that other countries are thinking of lifting mandates, since it will not only affect their vulnerable populations, but also may carry variants to other countries when they visit tourist spots. For some reason I cannot understand, here we have had no negative test mandate for entering the country, even though Costa Rica is a prime tourist destination. So at least we are required to wear masks, and soon we will have a vaccination proof requirement for many non-essential businesses, even though the crazy antivaxxers didn’t want it.

  12. Jezz says:

    “To everyone who is immune compromised, who has vulnerable loved ones, who has children under five or who has lost loved ones, I’m so sorry. I will wear a mask in public for the rest of my life.” Just beautiful.

  13. lucy2 says:

    Our numbers are way down here in NJ compared to January, but I’m still concerned about this being lifted. It’s a relatively easy way to cut down on some transmission, and not just of covid, but colds, flu, everything.
    I’m still wearing masks. I ordered some KN95 that are good, and I try to keep my distance, don’t go out much, and am working from home as much as possible. I’m one of the few wearing them, but oh well. I’m trying to protect myself as much as possible, and others too.

  14. Erika says:

    It’s really f*ck the kids and educators right? My partner works with k-5th and no one feels comfortable with the idea of no masks in schools.

  15. Turtledove says:

    Can I just say how grateful I am to see all you SANE Celebitches????????

    I am in MA, the mask mandate is ending at the end of this month. Individiual school districts will have the option to decide whether to keep it or not.

    On my local FB group, the news of the mandate being dropped was shared and it was maybe 95% of people just going on and on about how great it is. And how even if the school district decides to keep it “their kid isn’t wearing one”, and “Mah Freedumb” and on and on. Just a lot of screeching and tough guy posturing.

    Honestly, it just gave me a headache to read it. Here is the thing, I have been wearing a mask for 2 years and the ONLY time I care at all is when the weather causes my glasses to fog with it– and I am trying to grocery shop. Other than that, it just seems like NO BIG DEAL. (Never mind the fact that wearing it may mean someone else won’t DIE. Just the simple act of wearing it alone, just doesn’t bother me) I try to understand that different people have different viewpoints, even if I don’t like/agree with them. But the anti-maskers on my local FB group are jsut SO fired up about masks, the ire is equal to , I don’t know, what I would expect if they were told they had to have daily colonoscopies or something.

    I saw someone above mentioning that they have young kids, and I can completely understand those feelings. They also weren’t screeching and acting like a mask was = torture. Just stating that it might be nice for their young kids to see more normalcy. It is not the difference of opinion that I can’t understand it is the absolute angry tantrum and threats etc. Stuff like “I am not sending them to school with a mask and I am telling them to say no if they are tld to put one on”. Yeah, great idea. Because the teachers in our schools have not had enough to deal with the past 2 years.

    • kirk says:

      To avoid glasses fogging with mask try securing top of mask over nose with bandaid. Saw nurse doing this at 2nd vax. Works better than anti-fog wipes on glasses.

  16. Luna17 says:

    My state has had an indoor mask mandate pretty much for the past two years. The surrounding states have not and seem to be fairing the same or better so idk. Part of it is my state is more rural and has bad healthcare infrastructure compared to neighboring states with more resources. Our hospitals are still overrun so I don’t see ours going away soon. I guess NJ and NY now have more hospital beds so they feel ok about it. I’m so sick of masks and if the ones most people are wearing aren’t doing much then maybe it’s time to say good bye to them and try to get more people vaxxed since that’s more helpful. I have a toddler as well and concerned about her too! Ugh I just don’t know!

    • Klara with a K says:

      I’m a New Jerseyian, and it’s an election year, so our Governor wants sweet, sweet votes for ditching the masks. It’s rumored that he wants to run in 2024 as a moderate Democrat. The pandemic has really showed me how much government doesn’t give a crap about us, they care about staying in power and corporate donations. Which I’ve always known, but to have it confirmed during such an awful time is the cherry on top of the shit sundae

  17. Rai says:

    My 7yo was exposed twice at school and missed almost a month of in person learning. Her school has gone virtual 3 times since September. She missed two vaccine appointments because of her exposures. She’s demanding a return to homeschooling because she’s tired of the inconsistency and disruption.

    This is her normal. And she’s not unique. I am not sure what parents and admins are thinking… get your kids vaxxed and insist they wear the stupid mask. Or keep them at home. My patience and concern is nonexistent for this bulls+×&@.

  18. Tigerlily says:

    Canadian here in a western province where a conservative, right wing government has been in since 2019. They just announced no masks, no vax passports as of March 1. I’m devastated. I have RA and am on meds that suppress my immune system. My mom is 91 and I’m one of her caregivers. The vax rate for 5-18 year olds is low and what about under 5s? I’ve been very cautious about going out anywhere and now feel so frightened. What’s wrong with people? I am triple vaxxed but there’s uncertainty about how well it takes for immunocompromised peeps.

    • LittlePenguin says:

      It sounds like I’m in your same province As of Feb 13 kids don’t have to mask AT ALL because ‘they need to be happy and see smiles’. I’m worried for anyone immunocompromised, the kids under 5, HCW’s, the people who continue to mask being attacked verbally or even physically. (our govt has en- powered those anti vax/anti mask jerks) We have the highest Covid rate in Canada, even with them not allowing testing for most people.

  19. salmonpuff says:

    I’m in one of those states. We’ve had a mask mandate in place statewide for nearly two years now. In my solid blue county, we’ll likely be keeping the mandate at least for schools and probably for large indoor gatherings. But a huge swath of the state is anti-mask and VERY anti-mandate. As soon as I leave our area, mask compliance takes a nosedive. So lifting the mandate won’t change much.

    I have never understood what the big deal is and why masks are a hill so many people are willing to die on. My kids don’t mind them, either. It’s such a small way to protect our fellow citizens (and ourselves!) and to show solidarity with our fellows.

  20. gl says:

    I am the mother of a (vaccinated) child with special needs who has missed out on nearly his entire 3 year IEP due to covid restrictions. Every day that I send him into school with a mask I feel that it is an additional handicap that he does not need. Both of my children have gotten several colds while “masked” at school. The kids take it off for snack, gym, recess and in the case of my younger son, naptime. I often receive pictures from my younger son’s pre-k teacher where the majority of students are wearing cloth masks under their noses. I feel strongly that the real-world mask-wearing I’m seeing at my kids’ school has no benefits and has only hindered young students’ learning and mental health. I welcome this change in NJ and am counting down the days.

  21. Tootsie McJingle says:

    Around my area (Chicago suburbs) there have been some student protests at schools about masks. I’m sure they’re tired of masks like everyone else, but I’m thinking they may have their parents whispering in their ears about tyranny and blah blah blah. My 6 and 7 year olds can handle the masks better than many adults.

  22. FancyPants says:

    I’m old enough to remember last June when everybody said cases are down so vaccinated people can stop wearing masks and gather together and then we were right back where we started by October… I would LOVE to be wrong but I have a bad feeling this is going to end the same way. I don’t care how “over” COVID everybody is (I am too!!!), the problem is that COVID is not over us yet.

  23. February Pisces says:

    In the uk Boris is now saying that from the end of the month if you test positive you don’t even have to self isolate anymore, or wear masks. So basically no more restrictions at all. The fact that people who are actually Covid positive are allowed to walk around and breathe on everyone is so selfish.

  24. Trish says:

    They will have to grab my masks outta my cold dead hands. I have worn them since the beginning and I will continue to. I’ve been doubling up and wearing two till I can get my hands on one of those pro ones. I know there are peeps that will never comply so I’m just thinking of me and my loved ones at this point. I don’t ever wanna catch it.

  25. Annaloo. says:

    I think you’re still going to see a lot of people still in masks. We didn’t come this far in the pandemic protecting ourselves to just say “welp, that’s all finished! Back to normies like a switch!”

  26. Remy says:

    Most of the time I forget I even have my mask on. I’ll still be wearing mine when the mandate expires.

  27. Turtledove says:

    Thank you! I am going to try that!

  28. JanetDR says:

    I am astonished that mask mandates are being lifted. I work in a special ed preschool and thank goodness masking is still required ! (New York state) Covid is still closing down classrooms weekly. On average it’s 1 or 2 staff members and 1 or 2 kids testing positive weekly. Madness.