COLUMBUS, Ohio — Mayor Andrew Ginther signed a repeal of the city’s mask mandate on Tuesday.
The move means people will no longer be required to wear masks while in Columbus city limits.
Prior to Monday’s City Council vote and the mayor’s approval, Columbus was one of the last remaining places in Ohio to still require mask wearing in public indoor settings.
Health orders lifted on the state level on June 2.
Despite the vote, Councilmember Priscilla Tyson said it is important for people to still take precautions to remain safe and healthy.
"The repeal is not a declaration of victory over COVID-19. There is still much work to be done," Tyson said.
City council says residents who have not received a COVID-19 vaccine are still urged to wear masks in public settings.
“It's important for city council to align city codes that we provide clear guidance to businesses and residents on who is required to wear face coverings consistent with the CDC guidance,” said Michael Fielding, assistant health commissioner.
But, just because a location has lifted the mandate does not mean businesses need to follow.
“By repealing this, we would not be taking away the right of any business to mandate facemasks if they so choose. We hear from folks things like ‘It's a HIPAA violation’... that is absolutely not true,” said Rich Coglianese, with the City Attorney’s Office.
Four major central Ohio hospitals released a joint statement on Monday ahead of the vote, saying face coverings will still be required at all Mount Carmel, OhioHealth, OSU Wexner Medical Center and Nationwide facilities.