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NY Gov. and NYC Mayor Float Reinstating a Pre-Pandemic Ban on Masks in Public

HeadlineJun 18, 2024

Here in New York, Governor Kathy Hochul has come under fire from health experts after saying she is exploring whether to reinstate a partial ban on face coverings in public spaces. Hochul’s comments came during an interview on CNN, where she was asked by reporter Laura Coates if she would support a call by Jewish leaders to ban masks so pro-Palestinian protesters can be more easily identified.

Gov. Kathy Hochul: “I absolutely will go back and take a look at this and see whether it can be restored, because it is frightening to people. You’re sitting on a subway train, and someone puts on a mask like this and comes in. You don’t know if they’re going to be committing a crime, they’re going to have a gun, or whether they’re just going to be threatening and intimidating you because you are Jewish, which is exactly what happened the other day. Absolutely unacceptable in the state of New York.”

New York City Councilmember Shahana Hanif called the governor’s comments “inexplicable” and said a mask ban would “serve to appease reactionary voices and go against logical health protections. Mask bans won’t deter crime but only hinder public health.” New York City Mayor Eric Adams has also backed a possible mask ban, citing protests, as well as crimes committed by masked people.

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