Many restrictions will remain, such as the requirement to wear masks indoors at establishments. At restaurants, customers will still have to remain seated indoors, as well as outdoors at bars and restaurants, unless a plan for dance floors and other areas is approved by the Division of Public Health.
Xavier Teixido, who owns two popular restaurants, Kid Shelleen’s and Harry’s Savoy Grill, said he is relieved that Carney “is giving us more flexibility and capacity to meet the increased consumer demand.”
Teixido noted that those who have been vaccinated are “looking to get back to safely dining out and socializing again. Restaurants are a long way from recovery but this will allow us to better plan for our businesses and hire back more employees.”
Carney is also urging residents to follow outdoor masking guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, including wearing a mask in large crowds and gatherings such as concerts and sporting events.
“COVID-19 is still circulating in our communities but we have the tools to prevent severe illness and hospitalization,” Carney said in a statement issued about an hour before his weekly briefing. “Get vaccinated. And ask your friends and family if they’ve gotten their shot. That’s the best thing you can do to protect yourself and those you love.”
“We are excited to be at the point in our state’s efforts where we can lift these restrictions,’’ said Dr. Karyl Rattay, state public health director. “But it’s important to remember that our efforts are not over and we are not out of the woods yet,’’