COVID

Mayor Wu: No plans right now to bring back mask mandate amid increase in COVID-19 cases

“We’re watching the numbers very carefully."

Jessica Rinaldi/Globe Staff
Jessica Rinaldi/Globe Staff
COVID

Mayor Michelle Wu said Monday she has no immediate plans to bring back an indoor mask mandate in Boston despite a rising number of COVID-19 cases.

“We’re watching the numbers very carefully and at this point Boston’s Public Health Commission has recommended masks in indoor settings, but not required them,” Wu said, according to GBH. “That information is incredibly helpful in stopping the spread and doing the part that each of us can do to make sure that we’re still recognizing the COVID-19 virus is still here.”

Cases, hospitalizations, and test positivity rates are on the rise across Massachusetts.

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Last week, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention placed most of the Bay State at a “high” COVID community level, including Suffolk County.

People residing in “high” level areas should wear a “well-fitting” mask when indoors in public, regardless of vaccination status, according to the CDC. The agency also advises people to “maintain improved ventilation throughout indoor spaces when possible.”

On Monday, Wu did not reject the notion that a mask mandate could be brought back if virus spread continues to grow, according to GBH.

“We, unfortunately, will be living with this reality for some time and that means as a community and as a city government, we’re preparing every metric and policy so that we can be ready and adapt with the phase that we’re in as opposed to lurching from surge to surge,” Wu said. “This virus is definitely still out in the community and we just want everyone to be vigilant.”

Several cities in the commonwealth have started urging residents to wear masks while indoors, including Worcester, which issued an advisory on Friday.

In Boston, the indoor mask mandate for certain public places was lifted in March, but officials issued a mask recommendation last month. A mask mandate has remained in place in Boston Public Schools.

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The COVID-19 vaccine mandate for city employees, sought by Wu, remains under court review.

The latest data available from the Boston Public Health Commission showed on Monday that only one of the three core metrics driving the city’s COVID policy decision making — the test positivity rate — was above the city’s threshold of concern, according to GBH.

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