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City of Springfield to Reinstate Mask Mandate

Mayor Domenic J. Sarno and Health and Human Services (HHS) Commissioner Helen Caulton-Harris announced today that masks will be required in City Hall and all municipal buildings, effective immediately. Mayor Sarno and Commissioner Caulton-Harris also announced that by order of the Department of Health and Human Services and Board of Health, the City of Springfield will reinstate a mask mandate, regardless of vaccination status, beginning January 3, 2022.  The mask mandate will remain in place for 60 days, to be reassessed on March 1, 2022.  

After the 60-day period, the Department of Health and Human Services and the Board of Health will review the situation and make the recommendation on lifting or keeping the mask mandate based on the COVID-19 trends over that time period.  If, prior to the 60-day timeframe COVID-19 cases decrease substantially a review and decision to lift the mask mandate could happen.

Mayor Sarno stated, “We have had our first reoccurrence of positive Covid-19 cases in City Hall, therefore masks will be required in City Hall and all municipal buildings, effective immediately. Deep cleaning is underway where necessary. This measure is to preserve and protect our work force to keep our vital city services going. A city-wide indoor mask mandate will also be implemented, effective January 3, 2022. We are announcing this with time to allow businesses to prepare for this public health order.”

The City of Springfield continues to see an alarming increase in positive COVID-19 cases, especially in the younger population.  For the week of December 19, 2021, the City reported 1,132 cases, with 57% or 643 of the case being under the age of 30.  Below is the weekly breakdown of cases over the past five weeks.

Week of December 19, 2021

1,132

Week of December 12, 2021

997

Week of December 5, 2021

783

Week of November 28, 2021

818

Week of November 21, 2021

377

Mayor Sarno continued, “Commissioner Caulton-Harris and I are very concerned with this alarming spike in cases.  Despite Herculean efforts by our hospitals and testing sites, their capacities are being overwhelmed. We are in crisis mode. Our testing sites are being flocked with thousands getting tested – I would like to see this same type of aggressive response in people showing up to get vaccinated. I cannot stress enough the importance of getting vaccinated to protect yourself, your family, your colleagues, and your neighbors.”

HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris stated, “As we continue to see a troubling and alarming trend of increasing cases, the City of Springfield is updating our mask policy.  For 60 days, masks or face coverings will be required in the City of Springfield beginning on January 3rd.  After such time, we will review the data and make the recommendations on how to proceed next.  If COVID-19 cases significantly decrease before the 60-day timeframe we will review the policy.  I cannot stress enough, that this virus is here to stay and its infection rate is of serious concern.  This is not a sprint; this is a marathon and unless we get vaccinated we are at risk.  This new variant is no joke and poses a great risk.  We will continue to work with all of our community partners to make sure that this life saving vaccine is readily available for everyone.  There is still much work to do but together I have the full confidence that if we remain vigilant and take the appropriate action that is needed we will get through this stronger and healthier.  Again, I ask all of our residents, young and old, get your vaccine.”

Mayor Sarno and HHS Commissioner Caulton-Harris stated, “We do not make these decisions lightly and take these measures out of an abundance of caution, to be proactive so that we can continue to balance public health and safety, while keeping our economy moving forward.  We are in a much better position to handle this spike in cases as we now have our ‘ace in the hole’ the vaccine.  We implore everyone to get their shot and stay healthy.”   

“We have all worked so hard throughout this pandemic,” Mayor Sarno added.  “The vaccine works.  I implore our residents to please, get vaccinated.  This is about public health, plain and simple, not politics, conspiracy theories or misinformation on social media, which has never stopped or cured a medical challenge.  Vaccines work!  Please get and review the proven facts. Working together is the only way to defeat this COVID-19 pandemic.” 

The City of Springfield will continue to monitor the COVID-19 Coronavirus situation and is committed to keeping our residents and business community informed about the latest developments. For more information and to stay updated, please visit the City of Springfield’s website at www.springfield-ma.gov

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Page last updated:  Thursday, September 2, 2021 10:30 am