TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — Florida Senator Rick Scott on Thursday introduced the Stop Mandating Additional Requirements for Travel (SMART) Act to prohibit the federal government from requiring Americans to wear masks on public transportation.
“Americans are working hard to recover from the devastation of COVID-19 and travel is critical to getting our economy fully re-opened,” said Scott. “Since the start of the pandemic, I have supported wearing a mask to protect yourself and others. Now, the science has shown we can change course.”
Scott said with mask mandates being lifted around the country “it should not be mandating that people wear masks on public transportation.”
“The science just doesn’t support keeping this policy in place. We have to listen to the science and work together to move America forward,” Scott said. “I know Americans will do the right things to stay safe, and I hope my colleagues join me in passing this important bill.”
On January 29, 2021, the CDC issued an Order that required face masks to be worn by all people while on public transportation (which included all passengers and all personnel operating conveyances) traveling into, within, or out of the United States and U.S. territories.
The Order also required all people to wear masks while at transportation hubs (e.g., airports, bus or ferry terminals, train and subway stations, seaports, U.S. ports of entry, and other locations where people board public transportation in the United States and U.S. territories), including both indoor and outdoor areas.
On June 10, 2021, the CDC announced it will amend its Face Masks Order to not require people to wear a mask in outdoor areas of conveyances (if such outdoor areas exist on the conveyance) or while outdoors at transportation hubs.
Until it can amend the Order, the CDC “will exercise its enforcement discretion to not require wearing a mask in outdoor areas of transportation conveyances (if such outdoor areas exist on the conveyance) or while outdoors at transportation hubs.”
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