Beginning Wednesday, fully vaccinated New Yorkers will no longer need to wear masks or social distance.
New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced that beginning Wednesday New York State will adopt the CDC’s “Interim Public Health Recommendations for Fully Vaccinated People” for most business and public settings.
Consistent with the CDC guidance, Pre-K to 12 schools, public transit, homeless shelters, correctional facilities, nursing homes, and healthcare settings will continue to follow State’s existing COVID-19 health guidelines until more New Yorkers are fully vaccinated.
“New Yorkers have worked hard over the last year to prevent the spread of COVID and keep each other safe,” Governor Cuomo said. “That work has paid off and we are ecstatic to take this next step in the reopening of our beautiful state. The people of New York and visitors alike should take solace in the lifting of mask requirements, but be respectful of those who may still feel safest wearing their mask in public and business owners who may still ask patrons to don their mask. We are ever closer to our better, safer New York. We are New York tough and we have proven it.”
To implement the CDC’s guidance, New York State will be revising the following reopening guidelines to take effect on May 19:
Business Mask Rules
Given that the CDC has advised that fully vaccinated individuals do not need to wear masks and over 52 percent of New Yorkers over the age of 18 are fully vaccinated, the State will authorize businesses to continue to require masks for all in their establishments, consistent with the CDC guidance. In most settings, vaccinated individuals will not be required to wear a mask. Unvaccinated individuals, under both CDC and state guidance must wear masks in all public settings.
The Department of Health strongly recommends masks in indoor settings where vaccination status of individuals is unknown. Mask requirements by businesses must adhere to all applicable federal and state laws and regulations.
This recommendation will apply across commercial settings, including retail, food services, offices, gyms and fitness centers, amusement and family entertainment, hair salons, barbershops, and other personal care services, among other settings.
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy remained firm Monday that face coverings would still be required indoors at public places for the foreseeable future even after New York officials said they will lift the state’s mask mandate.