Politics

Philadelphia becomes first major American city to restore indoor mask mandate

Philadelphia has become the first major US city to restore the indoor mask mandate.

This comes as the city faced a sharp increase in coronavirus infections. According to NBC News, confirmed Covid-19 cases have risen by 50% in the past 10 days. This is the threshold for which the city guidelines require people to wear masks indoors.

The city health department is attributing the spike in cases to the BA.2 subvariant of omicron, which continues to spread rapidly throughout the United States and elsewhere.

Dr. Cheryl Bettigole, the health commissioner, said, “If we fail to act now, knowing that every previous wave of infections has been followed by a wave of hospitalizations, and then a wave of deaths, it will be too late for many of our residents.” Bettigole referred back to the 750 Philadelphia residents who died from the Omicron variant over the Winter.

She continued, “This is our chance to get ahead of the pandemic, to put our masks on until we have more information about the severity for this new variant.” Philadelphia had previously ended its mask mandate on March 2nd. Bettigole said, “I sincerely wish we didn’t have to do this again, but I am very worried about our vulnerable neighbors and loved ones.”

ARTICLE: JILLIAN WEIDNER

MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: NEW YORK TIMES

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I was born and raised in Omaha, NE before moving to Sioux Falls, SD to attend college at Augustana University. This past May I graduated from Augustana with a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish and Biology with an emphasis in Allied Health. I first discovered FBA through my involvement with Turning Point USA where I worked as a Campus Coordinator in college. I have a passion for politics and activism, and was drawn to FBA’s dedication to spreading the truth. Unbiased news is rare in today’s society, so I wanted to be a part of FBA’s mission to change that.

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