'It should be up to parents to decide:' Lawmakers push for end to mandatory masks in schools
As communities and school districts across the state rescind their mask mandates, Gov. Roy Cooper is getting on board that trend. He is expected to encourage local governments to lift any remaining mask mandates in a news conference Thursday afternoon.Posted — Updated
As communities and school districts across the state rescind their mask mandates, Gov. Roy Cooper is getting on board that trend. He is expected to encourage local governments to lift any remaining mask mandates in a news conference Thursday afternoon.
Cooper communications director tweeted the update Thursday morning, from his account where the image if him wearing a mask.
"Enough is enough," NC House Speaker Tim Moore said. "Not only is it time to do something, frankly we're probably a little past time."
In a statement, North Carolina Association of Educators President Tamike Walker Kelly disagreed saying, "The proposed legislation undermines local decision-making and prioritizes partisan politics over public health and safety.”
"Don't you think the parents are going to be more concerned about their children than some bureaucrat," Moore asked.
A Wake County parent stood to thank lawmakers for their action, saying, "Trusting the public is always a good idea."
Cumberland County’s indoor mask mandate ends Sunday at 5 p.m., and Mayor Mary-Ann Baldwin said she hopes Raleigh's mandate can be dropped by March.
The governor's briefing will be held at 3 p.m.
On Wednesday, the state reported a high number of new COVID-19 deaths, 133, but fewer hospitalizations.
Fewer than 3,000 people, 2,872, were hospitalized with COVID-19 for the first time since Jan. 2. According to WRAL Data Trackers, that's the 20th straight day the number has gone down.
The state reported 522 people are in ICUs across the state, the fewest since Dec. 30.
On Wednesday, 6,079 new cases were reported, the most in four days but still 42% less than one week ago. The number takes the state's seven-day rolling average below 6,000 for the first time since Dec. 29.
The state's positivity rate -- the percentage of COVID-19 tests that yield positive results -- stands at 12.5%, which is the lowest percentage since Christmas Eve.
Along with lower case numbers, fewer people are getting tested for COVID-19 as well. Around 27,000 tests were taken Tuesday compared to the 127,000 taken one month earlier.
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