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Mask Mandate Returns in Chicago

Zack Miller | The PhoenixMasks will once again be required in all indoor public settings in Chicago as of Aug. 20, officials announced.

Everyone older than 2, regardless of their vaccination status, will be required to wear a mask in public indoor settings in Chicago as of Aug. 20, officials announced. 

The Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) announced Aug. 17 the city’s mask mandate in public indoor settings will return as the average number of new daily cases of COVID-19 in Chicago surpasses 400, according to a news release from CDPH.

This comes after the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) updated its guidelines July 27 to recommend mask-wearing indoors for everyone, regardless of vaccination status, in areas of substantial or high transmission.

Based on Chicago’s population, more than 400 new COVID-19 cases per day moves the city into the CDC’s “high” transmission category, the CDPH’s news release said. 

Loyola already requires masks in all public spaces and buildings on its campuses as students plan to return to in-person classes this fall, The Phoenix reported. The university is also requiring all students, faculty and staff to be vaccinated, The Phoenix reported.

Chicago’s daily average of COVID-19 cases is 462, with a daily average of 29 hospitalizations and about 3 deaths, according to data from the City of Chicago as of Aug. 19.

Because more than 70% of Chicago adults have received at least one dose of the vaccine, Chicago’s rates of COVID-19 hospitalizations and deaths are lower than they were in 2020 at the same case rate, according to the CDPH’s news release.

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