Philadelphia will lift recently reinstated indoor mask mandate

People, some without masks, walk along Market Street

People, some without masks, walk along Market Street in Philadelphia, Friday, May 21, 2021. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

This story originally appeared on 6abc

The City of Philadelphia will be soon lifting its indoor mask mandate that went into effect on Monday, Action News has learned.

Officials say the Board of Health voted to rescind the mandate Thursday night after reviewing the latest data.

Officials are strongly recommending masks still be worn indoors. Further details on the masking policy will be announced Friday morning.

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The city had said the mandate was returning because COVID cases have increased 50% over the last two weeks.

But in a statement to Action News Thursday night, the latest data tells a different story:

“Due to decreasing hospitalizations and a leveling of case counts, the City will move to strongly recommending masks in indoor public spaces as opposed to a mask mandate. Given the latest data, the BOH voted to rescind the mandate.

The Philadelphia mandate was met with backlash.

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A group of about 10 businesses and individuals filed a lawsuit against the city over the weekend, arguing the health department was overreaching.

The mandate also caused confusion for city residents after a federal judge in Florida voted to void the national mask mandate on public transportation.

While the Justice Department has stated it would appeal the ruling, masks, for now, are not required on most planes and mass transit, like SEPTA and Amtrak.

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