Gordon Eases Some Health Orders, Extends Others

Will it ever be safe to remove our masks? If so, when?
Will it ever be safe to remove our masks? If so, when?

Statewide public health orders restricting crowd sizes during the COVID-19 pandemic will ease next week, allowing for larger indoor and outdoor gathering sizes, Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon announced Thursday.

Starting Jan. 26, indoor gatherings may be attended by up to 250 people and outdoor gatherings by up to 500, provided those in attendance adhere to other public health orders remaining in effect until Feb. 14.

Among those orders are the statewide mask mandate that currently requires all residents to wear an approved face covering while in public spaces and another order requiring residents to maintain proper social distancing outlined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The easement of the orders are the result of progress made by the state and its residents, moving everyone closer to safely returning to more normal lives, Gordon said in a Jan. 21 statement, adding that the steps taken by the state have helped to achieve this.

“I am confident that as our vaccination rate increases, the data-driven approach we are taking and our improving circumstances will give us more opportunity to further relax our orders,” Gordon stated.

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According to statement from Gordon’s office, statewide COVID-19 hospitalizations were down 166 cases from a peak of 247 cases reported at the end of November 2020.

And while health officials remain concerned about a UK variant of COVID-19 reported in Teton County last week, which is reportedly more transmissible than the original strain, current approved COVID-19 vaccines are believed to be effective against it as well.

New President Joe Biden signed an executive order Jan. 20 requiring masks be worn on federal property. During an address earlier today, Biden also announced additional executive action to extend masking requirements to interstate travel, “like on trains, planes and buses,” Biden said.