INDIANAPOLIS — Since the beginning of the pandemic, Marion County has marched to the beat of it’s own drum when it comes to COVID-19 safety guidelines. This week is no different, but the result may leave business owners with more headaches as they deal with customer confusion.
The CDC now says fully vaccinated people can go without a face mask, both indoors and outdoors. But in Marion County, the mask mandate will continue.
In a statement, Dr. Virginia Caine, director of the Marion County Public Health Department, says the new CDC recommendation will be examined by the health department. The department plans to also analyze local coronavirus numbers and vaccination data, then present their own recommendation to the Indianapolis City-County Council. That’s when the City-County Council will make their decision on what to change regarding local coronavirus safety guidelines.
Until that happens, local business owners like Geena Schneider, manager at Gallery Pastry Bar, expect confusion amongst customers from other counties. She tells WISH-TV she expects some customers to take advantage of the confusion.
“Because we already have such a big problem with it now, I think people are just going to take advantage of it whether they’re vaxxed or not. Who is gonna know, you know? It’s not really our business to say, ‘Show me your card,'” Schneider tells WISH-TV.
The Indianapolis City County-Council’s next meeting could take place on June 7 or 14, but they could schedule an earlier meeting if necessary.
Full statement from Dr. Virginia Caine:
“Today’s announcement from the CDC emphasizes the efficacy of the COVID-19 vaccine in preventing serious illness and death, and underscores the importance of the vaccine as our community’s road map to more freedom and safety. In Marion County, the outlook is good – but efforts to get more people vaccinated and reduce the impact of COVID-19 continue. A mask mandate remains in effect at this time in Marion County as part of the current public health order ratified by the Indianapolis City-County Council on Monday. The Marion County Public Health Department will review this new CDC guidance along with an assessment of current local COVID-19 data and vaccination rates and make a recommendation to the City-County Council on the continued path toward opening our community safely.”