Pritzker to change Illinois rules to follow CDC guidance on masks

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Gov. J.B. Pritzker said Tuesday he will update the state's guidance for people who fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to allow them to shed masks when taking part in outdoor activities, but masks will still be required in large groups outside.

“Here's welcome news from CDC: fully vaccinated people can enjoy most outdoor activities without a mask,” Pritzker said on Facebook as he shared a Washington Post report about the guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

President Joe Biden on Tuesday said because of the increased number of COVID-19 vaccines, “the CDC made an important announcement: Starting today, if you’re fully vaccinated, and you’re outdoors, you need – and not in a big crowd – you no longer need to wear a mask.”

Pritzker has had a mask mandate in place since May 1. He’s filed two rounds of emergency rules requiring businesses to post mask mandates and enforce the use of face coverings inside. The latest emergency rules are set to expire in June.

“We're updating all of our guidance here in Illinois to be in line with the CDC’s new mask guidance,” Pritzker said on Facebook.

Biden said wanted to be sure people still wore masks when outdoors in large gatherings.

“I want to be absolutely clear: If you’re in a crowd, like a stadium or at a conference or a concert, you still need to wear a mask even if you’re outside,” Biden said. “But beginning today, gathering with a group of friends in a park, going for a picnic – as long as you are vaccinated and outdoors – you can do it without a mask.”

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