Delaware's universal indoor mask mandate ends; school mask requirement extends

The mask requirement in public and private K-12 schools and child care facilities ends March 31.
DOVER, Delaware (WPVI) -- The state of Delaware's month-long indoor mask mandate for businesses came to an end Friday morning.

The universal mask mandate expired at 8 a.m.

Governor John Carney said Monday he was rescinding the order he imposed a month ago requiring Delawareans to wear masks in indoor business settings.

"We're in a much better place than we were several weeks ago in the middle of the Omicron surge of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations," Governor Carney said in a statement.

But Carney temporarily extended the mask requirement in public and private K-12 schools and child care facilities to 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, March 31.

Administration officials say the temporary extension will give parents time to get their children vaccinated before the expiration of the mask requirement.

It will also allow local school administrators and school boards to consider their own mask requirements.

"I want to be clear about this point - COVID is still circulating in our communities. And the virus still poses a risk of serious illness, particularly among those who are not up to date on their vaccinations," Carney said. "But we have the tools to keep ourselves and each other safe. Get vaccinated. Get your booster. That's especially important for children, where we continue to see low rates of vaccination. For all the parents out there - the best way to keep your child in school learning, and to prevent them from getting sick, is to get them vaccinated. It's that simple. I want to thank all Delawareans for taking this threat seriously."


The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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