Wyoming the latest to lift statewide mask mandate

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In this illustration dated February 26, 2020, protective N-95 face masks lie on a table at an office in Washington, DC. (Photo by EVA HAMBACH/AFP via Getty Images)

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (ABC4) – Wyoming is the latest state to see its mask mandate being lifted.

In a Monday statement, Governor Mark Gordon says that effective March 16, the statewide mask mandate will be lifted and bars, restaurants, theaters, and gyms will be able to resume normal operations.

The decision to make these changes comes as the state sees a declining number of active COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, according to the release, in addition to significant success rolling out the vaccine.

“I thank the people of Wyoming for their commitment to keeping one another safe throughout this pandemic,” Governor Gordon says. “It is through their efforts that we have kept our schools and businesses operating and our economy moving forward. I ask all Wyoming citizens to continue to take personal responsibility for their actions and stay diligent as we look ahead to the warmer months and to the safe resumption of our traditional spring and summer activities.”

Governor Gordon is encouraging residents to continue wearing face coverings in indoor public spaces and to follow the best practices adopted by any business they visit to slow the spread of the virus.

Face covering protocol will remain in place at K-12 schools, the statement says.

“Wyoming is one of the few states in the country that kept students learning in the classroom for the entire school year. We made sacrifices, but the earlier orders saved lives. We persevered,” explains Governor Gordon. “With this approach we can have graduations, proms and a great end to the school year by keeping schools open. Especially since our children will not have the chance to be vaccinated this spring.”

In early March, Texas became the largest state to drop its mask mandate.

Utah’s mask mandate could end as early as April 10 under a bill that passed through the State Legislature. Governor Spencer Cox, who hopes to be maskless by July 4, is expected to sign the bill into law.

There are mixed feelings about the bill as some said Utahns should keep wearing masks, and other say it’s time to leave it up to the individual.

On Monday, the CDC announced that fully-vaccinated individuals can gather, without masks, with other fully-vaccinated people.

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