City of Duluth Will No Longer Enforce Citywide Mask Mandate Beginning Today

DULUTH, Minn. – The City of Duluth announced Friday morning that following Governor Tim Walz’s new mask guidance for the state of Minnesota, the city is taking steps to end its citywide mask mandate.

As of Friday morning, city officials say they will no longer enforce the citywide mask ordinance.

“Beginning today, the City will no longer enforce the mask ordinance,” Chief Administrative Officer Noah Schuchman said. “It is also important to remember that the CDC’s guidance on easing mask-wearing is for fully vaccinated people and that some business sectors and nonprofits are still required to wear masks within their spaces and may require the public to do the same.”

“The mask ordinance was a plan that was executed to keep our community safe,” City Councilor Terese Tomanek said. “We know that these last fifteen months have been difficult. We are so grateful for the community’s support of this effort. It helped to slow the spread of COVID-19 and saved lives. We are excited to celebrate this big step in starting to get back to normal and more familiar times.”

“Businesses and organizations are welcome to create their own policies around mask-wearing that fit their business models,” Vice President Arik Forsman said. “We ask for the public’s help in continuing to abide by those requirements out of respect for those who work and receive services from within these venues.”

The city’s emergency mask ordinance was put into place on July 13, 2020, and authors of the original ordinance say they plan to bring a repeal forward at the next city council meeting on May 24.

“This decision is another step that illustrates that Duluth is emerging from the pandemic ready to embrace a return to community life that is meaningful and important.” Mayor Emily Larson said. “With the change in seasons and many people reuniting with family and friends again, we are ready and eager to fully recover from the impacts that COVID has left on our communities and across the world.”

The City will keep the Emergency Peacetime Order in place due to the pandemic continuing. The City encourages the public to get vaccinated to prevent an upsurge in positive COVID-19 cases. City staff are tracking positive cases and trends in St. Louis County and the state.

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