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New Orleans drops mask mandate as coronavirus numbers fall

New Orleans Parade
Posted at 4:19 PM, Oct 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-28 16:19:12-04

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — New Orleans is largely ending a mandate requiring residents and visitors wear masks indoors.

The new policy goes into on Friday.

Wednesday's announcement by Mayor LaToya Cantrell comes as infections of the highly contagious delta variant of the coronavirus continue to fall.

“The indoor mask mandate that was in place over the past several months helped us reduce the surge in cases we saw due to the Delta variant,” said Dr. Jennifer Avegno, Director of NOHD in a news release. “Even though the numbers are currently low, we must remind our residents that this pandemic is not over and remains dangerous for all that may come in contact with the virus.”

The mayor says the mandate will be lifted Friday with a few exceptions: Masks will still be required in healthcare facilities, on public transportation, and in K-12 schools. The mask mandate was implemented July 30 as the fourth surge of the coronavirus pandemic-packed hospitals.

On Tuesday, Gov. John Bel Edwards largely ended a statewide mask mandate, saying the worst of the latest surge appeared to be over.