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Many airlines are quick to cancel their mask mandates after a federal judge’s decision, but not yet CTA or Metra


CHICAGO (CBS) – Federal Judge in Florida annulled the national mandate for masks, which applies to aircraft and other public transportand the Transport Security Administration has stated that it will no longer fulfill this mandate.

This has forced many airlines to abandon mandates for masks on the spot. But some public transportation organizations in the Chicago area have not followed suit.

The solution On Monday, U.S. District Judge Catherine Kimball Mizel in Tampa said the order exceeded the authority of U.S. health officials and that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) had improperly reasoned its decision and failed to comply with proper regulations. Law (APA).

“The court concluded that the mask’s mandate exceeds the statutory powers of the CDC and violates the procedures required for the agency’s rulemaking under the APA,” the judge wrote. “Accordingly, the court annuls the mandate and sends it to the CDC.”

A judge nominated by Trump also wrote that the court “adopts a CDC political ruling that the mask requirement will limit the transmission of COVID-19 and thus reduce the number of serious diseases and deaths that cause COVID-19,” but “that conclusions alone are not enough to create a good deed. ”

The decision came less than a week after the CDC decided to extend the federal mandate on masks until May 3 to give more time to study subcontractor BA.2 omicron coronavirus, which is now responsible for the vast majority of cases in the United States. Prior to that, it was due to expire on Monday.

Airline executives are lobbying for an end to the mandate of aircraft masks, as most states have repealed their requirements for indoor camouflage. Several airlines announced policy changes immediately on Monday.

United Airlines said the mask requirement has now been lifted:

“Masks are no longer required at United on domestic flights, some international flights (depending on the mask requirements in the country of arrival) or at U.S. airports.

“While this means our staff are no longer required to wear masks – and no longer have to comply with mask requirements for most flyers – they will be able to wear masks if they wish to do so, as the CDC continues to strongly recommend wearing masks on public transport.

“We will continue to monitor the situation closely in the event of change.”

Delta Airlines has announced that it is also abolishing the mandate of the mask for domestic flights. The airline issued the following statement:

“Following the decision of a U.S. District Court judge on Monday, April 18, the Biden administration announced that the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) would no longer fulfill the federal mandate requiring masks at all U.S. airports and on board aircraft. Masks take effect immediately. optional for all airport employees, crew members and customers at U.S. airports and on board all domestic aircraft, as well as on most international flights.

“Delta employees and customers can continue to wear masks if they wish. Wearing a well-fitting mask protects the user, even if the people around are not wearing masks.

“Given the unexpected nature of this message, please keep in mind that customers, airline employees and employees of federal agencies – such as TSA – may receive this information at different times. Within the next 24 hours, you may face inconsistent law and order. as this news is more widespread – be sure to show understanding and patience with others who may not know that enforcement is no longer required.Customier communication as well as signs and advertisements at the airport will be updated to report that camouflage is now optional – it can take a short period of time.

“Local mask mandates in other countries may still apply. Additional updates will be available as new information becomes available.

“We will be relieved to see that the US mandate on masks to facilitate travel around the world is shrinking as COVID-19 becomes a regular seasonal virus. Thank you for your support in fulfilling the federal mask mandate and keeping each other and our customers safe during the pandemic. ».

Southwest Airlines made a similar announcement:

“On Monday, a federal judge ruled that the federal mandate for public transport masks, including at airlines and airports, was no longer valid. will not fulfill the federal mask mandate at this time.

“As a result of this development, which takes effect immediately, Southwest employees and customers will be able to choose whether they want to wear a mask, and we encourage people to make the best decision to support their personal well-being. In addition, Southwest will continue to support comfort for those who travels with us, offering additional layers of protection, including sophisticated cabin ventilation systems on board our aircraft that include HEPA air filtration, which removes at least 99.97% of the particles in the air.

“We value the cooperation and efforts of our customers and employees as required by policy evolution. We will continue to follow healthcare recommendations and federal requirements, always maintaining safety as an uncompromising priority.”

The passenger took to Twitter from his seat aboard the United flight from Chicago to Alaska. He celebrated by taking off his mask.

Some airline passengers also cheered mid-flight announcements that the federal mask mandate was no longer valid.

Before airline announcements, Charlie De Mar of CBS 2 spoke to CBS News travel expert Peter Greenberg about what the decision would mean for travelers.

“In this decision, the struggle has now begun in the service rooms of every American airline to try to find out what the appropriate reaction will be travelers,” said Greenberg.

Meanwhile, both Amtrak and Metra have initially stated that they are not making any changes when it comes to camouflage – passengers will still need to disguise themselves.

The same was stated by the Chicago Transit Service.

“Masks are still needed on CTA trains and buses,” the CTA said in a statement. “If this requirement changes, we will notify customers.”

But after announcing that TSA would no longer fulfill the mask mandate, Amtrak changed its position:

“Although Amtrak passengers and staff are no longer required to wear masks on trains or at stations, masks are welcomed and remain an important preventative measure against COVID-19. Anyone who needs or wishes to wear masks is encouraged to do so.”

But CTA and Metra have not changed their positions and still require masks.

“I think they will just need to open the gates and essentially abolish the mask requirement,” Greenberg said.

This was stated by TSA will not perform the national mandate for masks in airplanes and public transportation is longer because Judge Tampa’s decision means that the CDC order on masks in public transportation is not valid at this time. The mandate will not be fulfilled until federal agencies review the judge’s decision, a spokesman for the administration said. The CDC continues to promote masks in public transportation.

The Chicago Department of Aviation, which manages O’Hare and Midway Airports, said it would “continue to follow, monitor and comply with all current and future recommendations from federal, state and local health and safety authorities,” and referred additional questions to TSA and the Disease Control Center.

The CDC has said it has not commented on the lawsuit. The Ministry of Justice is considering the decision.

“The CDC has recommended continuing the order for an additional two weeks to be able to evaluate the latest science in line with its responsibility to protect the American people,” White House spokeswoman Jen Psaki said Monday afternoon. “So this is obviously a disappointing decision. The CDC continues to recommend wearing a mask on public transport. As you know, it only appeared today in the afternoon, so right now the Ministry of the Interior is going to comply and the CDC is reviewing decision and of course the Ministry of Justice makes any decisions about the trial ”.

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