Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, CDPH Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady announced Tuesday the city will remove the mask and vaccine requirements for certain public spaces on February 28. This is in alignment with the State of Illinois.
“Based on key data, it looks as if the worst of the Omicron surge is behind us and we will be able to safely remove these emergency measures instituted to protect the health and safety of our residents,” said Mayor Lightfoot. “I want to thank Chicagoans and in particular, our business community for adhering to these measures and helping us pass through this difficult time while keeping restaurants and other businesses open.”
Masks will still be required in health care settings, on public transit and in other congregate settings.
For now, masks will still be required at Chicago Public Schools. The mayor said CPS is currently meeting with stakeholders and they should have an announcement soon.
After five days of COVID-19 isolation or quarantine, masks will continue to be required in days 6-10 in public spaces, as they are now. CDPH recommends Chicagoans who may be immunocompromised or have a family member who is immunocompromised still wear a mask, as well residents under the age of 5 who are still not eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine.
In an update last week, Dr. Arwady said the city will determine when to drop COVID restrictions using metrics for case count, hospital bed availability, ICU bed availability and test positivity.
CPS CEO Pedro Martinez will be joining Mayor Lightfoot and Dr. Arwady for the City Hall press conference at 2 p.m.