Mayor Adams makes masks optional in day cares and schools for children 2-4 years of age

Mayor Eric Adams wearing a COVID-19 mask
Mayor Eric Adams wearing a COVID-19 mask
Photo by Dean Moses

New York City Mayor Eric Adams announced an optional mask mandate for schools and daycare centers caring for children between the ages of two and four on June 9.

Citing data regarding the most recent wave of COVID-19 throughout the city, Mayor Adams stated the mask optional mandate would be in effect because New Yorkers have been diligent in protecting themselves and their families from the virus.

The change takes effect Monday, June 13.

“I have always said that the science will guide us out of the pandemic, and because we have followed the data, which shows that cases are steadily falling, we‘ve beaten back the latest COVID-19 surge,” said Mayor Adams in a press release on Thursday. “New Yorkers stepped up when we needed them most and have put us on the path to lower risk.”

Mayor Adams also highlighted his “Stay Safe and Stay Open” agenda for schools, reinforcing his administration’s decision to keep public schools open throughout this stage of the pandemic. 

“Throughout the current wave, schools have remained the safest places for our children and beginning Monday, June 13, we will make masks optional for 2-4 year old children in all early childhood settings,” said Adams. “We still strongly recommend that New Yorkers of all ages continue to wear masks indoors and we will continue to make masks available for any child or school staff member who wishes to continue wearing them.”

This follows statements from health officials who also previously stated their recommendations to wear masks in indoor spaces to prevent infection. 

Adams reiterated that he stands with New York parents as they make their decisions on whether or not to keep their children masked.

“I’m with New York City parents and New Yorkers can trust this administration to continue to make the proper public health decisions to keep our kids safe,” the mayor said.

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