New York lifts COVID-19 restrictions, planning celebrations

New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo Tuesday announced the immediate lifting of major COVID-19 restrictions across the state as 70 percent of adults in the state have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

New York State’s health guidance and industry specific guidelines become optional for retail, food services, offices, gyms and fitness centers, amusement and family entertainment, hair salons, barber shops and personal care services, among other commercial settings.

These guidelines cover social gathering limits, capacity restrictions, social distancing, cleaning and disinfection, health screening, and contact information for tracing.

Meanwhile, unvaccinated individuals should continue to wear masks, in accordance with guidance by federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Moreover, New York State’s health guidelines continue to be in effect for large-scale indoor event venues, pre-K to grade 12 schools, public transit, homeless shelters, correctional facilities, nursing homes, and health care settings per CDC guidelines.

As many as 13 landmarks in the state would be lit blue and gold and ten sites across New York State would see display of fireworks on Tuesday night for celebrating achievement of the vaccination milestone.

“As we celebrate lifting restrictions and resuming our re-imagined normal, we also reflect on the hard work of New York State’s essential workers and we remember those we lost,” said Cuomo.

Cuomo announced Monday that New York would hold the 2021 New York State Fair in Syracuse from Aug. 20 to Sept. 6 with 100 percent capacity.

Dating back to 1832, the New York State Fair was canceled in 2020 amid the pandemic. More than 1.2 million people attended the event in 2019, according to the local government.

New York State is also implementing a 40-million-U.S.-dollars campaign to draw domestic and international tourists to upstate New York, according to Cuomo.

In New York City, a ticker tape parade celebrating the summer and thanking local essential workers would take place on July 7 in Lower Manhattan, said New York Mayor Bill de Blasio on Monday.

New York State also announced on Tuesday it would close over 30 state-run COVID-19 testing sites in the remaining of June as statewide 7-day average positivity fell to 0.4 percent and demand for testing plunged.


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