As vaccinations increase, businesses and industries to reopen as state reaches last phase of Restore Illinois Plan
Information provided by the Governor’s Office
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (June 4, 2021) – Illinois Governor JB Pritzker has released guidelines for Phase 5 of the Restore Illinois plan, which will go into effect on June 11 and marks a full reopening of all businesses and activities. The move follows weeks of steady decreases in new positive COVID-19 cases and with over 67% of residents age 18 and older receiving their first vaccine dose.
The guidance will mean businesses, large-scale events, conventions, amusement parks, and seated-spectator venues, among others, will be able to operate at full capacity for the first time since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The State is also lifting the outdoor mask requirement in schools in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
This guidance comes as Illinois has recently reached a test positivity rate of less than 2 percent, more than half of the population has been fully vaccinated, and key hospitalization metrics have been declining since early May.
“After a tremendously challenging year, Illinois has now reached a defining moment in our efforts to defeat COVID-19,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “Thanks to the hard work of residents across the state, Illinois will soon resume life as we knew it before — returning to events, gatherings, and a fully reopened economy, with some of the safety guidelines we’ve adopted still in place.”
Masks and other guidelines
Upon entering Phase 5, fully vaccinated people can resume activities without wearing a mask except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance. Illinois will continue to recommend masking for unvaccinated persons, and require it for all people while traveling on public transportation, in congregate settings, in health care settings, as well as in schools, day cares, and educational institutions pursuant to the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and CDC guidance. Businesses and local municipalities can put in place additional mitigations as they deem appropriate.
Under Phase 5, all sectors of the economy can resume at regular capacity. Phase 5 also marks the return of traditional conventions, festivals, and large events without capacity restrictions. Large gatherings of all sizes can resume across all industry settings, and Phase 5 removes requirements that businesses institute mandatory social distancing in seated venues as well as daily health screenings of employees and visitors. Businesses and venues should continue to allow for social distancing to the extent possible, especially indoors. Businesses and venues may also continue to put in place additional public health mitigations as they deem appropriate, including requiring face coverings.
The guidance for schools is updated to align with the CDC guidelines, including lifting the requirement for individuals to mask outdoors in most situations.
Vaccinations open the door to Phase 5
“This pandemic has robbed us of many of our freedoms such as going to ball games and concerts, celebrating graduations, weddings, and birthdays, going to dinner with friends, and even sharing a hug with loved ones we don’t live with,” said IDPH Director Dr. Ngozi Ezike. “The vaccine is giving us our freedoms back and allowing us to move to Phase 5. Let’s keep the vaccination momentum going so we can put this pandemic in the rearview mirror and not look back.”
Businesses and communities can learn more about Phase 5 recommended public health practices by visiting IDPH’s website.
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