COVID-19 Update -- May 20, 2021

May 20, 2021

On May 17, 2021, Governor Pritzker issued Executive Order 2021-10, aligning the State of Illinois' mask mandate with recently released CDC guidelines. Executive Order 2021-10 preserves the right of local municipalities and individual businesses and organizations to maintain stricter masking and social distancing requirements than the state's, consistent with the CDC guidelines, which state "that [fully vaccinated people] can resume numerous activities without wearing a mask or staying 6 feet apart, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance." (emphasis is ILA's) Specifically, executive order 2021-10 states in section 3:

"3. Public health requirements for businesses, nonprofits, and other organizations.
For the purposes of this Executive Order, covered businesses include any for-profit, nonprofit, or educational entity, regardless of the nature of the service, the function it performs, or its corporate or entity structure. Those entities must take the following public health measures to protect their employees, their customers, and all others who come into physical contact with their operations. Nothing in this Executive Order prevents these entities from undertaking stricter or additional public health measures; to the contrary, businesses are encouraged to prioritize the health and safety of their workers and customers, and may continue to require face coverings and social distancing, even for those who are fully vaccinated." (emphasis is ILA's)

Throughout the Bridge Phase, libraries have the right to maintain or alter masking and social distancing policies that fit the metrics in their communities and meet the needs of the populations served; including young children not yet eligible for vaccination and/or teens and adults who cannot receive the vaccine. 

In related news, the REALM project has published a briefing, prepared by researchers at Battelle, intended to provide timely information about SARS-CoV-2 vaccines and variants to libraries, archives, and museums (LAMs), and their stakeholders. This is a review of scientific literature published through April 26, 2021, and should be used in conjunction with other timely resources to ensure decision-making in LAMs reflects the latest scientific understanding.

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