U.S. airlines on Monday rushed to end the COVID-19 mask mandate but continued to recommend wearing a face mask when using public transport after a federal judge in Florida called the two-year-old rule for public transportation unlawful.
Chicago-based UAL said masks were no longer required on domestic flights, some international flights, or at U.S. airports.
Atlanta, Georgia-based Delta said effective immediately, masks are optional for all airport employees, crew members and customers inside U.S. airports and onboard all domestic aircraft and most international flights. The airline, however, said employees and customers may continue wearing masks if they so choose.
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Why It Matters: U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle said the Biden administration’s face mask mandate for public transportation exceeded the authority granted to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) under federal law and was issued in violation of rule-making procedures, the Wall Street Journal reported on Monday.
Mizelle, an appointee of former President Donald Trump, reportedly said Congress had never clearly given the CDC the power to issue population-wide preventive public-health measures.
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