Biden Calls on All Americans to Mask Up in Public and Indoors

Bloomberg Quicktake: Now published this video item, entitled “Biden Calls on All Americans to Mask Up in Public and Indoors” – below is their description.

Hoping to set a model for employers nationwide, President Joe Biden will announce Thursday that millions of federal workers must show proof they’ve received a coronavirus vaccine or submit to regular testing and stringent social distancing, masking and travel restrictions.

Biden’s move for the federal government — by far the nation’s largest employer — comes in the face of surging coronavirus rates driven by pockets of vaccine resistance and the more infectious delta variant.

A number of major corporations and some local governments are ordering new requirements on their own, but the administration feels much more is needed.

In an effort to mitigate opposition, officials have been careful to emphasize that the move does not amount to a vaccine mandate, but rather imposes stricter masking, testing, social distancing and travel restrictions on federal employees to encourage them to get vaccinated.

On Monday, the Department of Veterans Affairs became the first federal agency to require vaccinations, for its health workers.

And on Tuesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reversed its masking guidelines and said that all Americans living in areas with substantial or high coronavirus transmission rates should wear masks indoors, regardless of their vaccination status.

With the latest CDC data showing that Washington, D.C., is facing substantial rates of transmission, by Wednesday reporters and staff were again masking up at the White House.

About 60% of American adults have been fully vaccinated.

Biden had set a July 4 goal to get at least one shot in 70% of adults, and is still not quite there. The latest figure is 69.3.

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