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Governor Justice announces face covering requirement to end on West Virginia Day

Christian Fernsby |
Governor Jim Justice announced that, after consulting with State medical experts regarding vaccination rates, the Statewide Indoor Face Covering Requirement will be lifted on the State’s 158th birthday –also known as West Virginia Day – Sunday, June 20, 2021.

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“We believe that all West Virginians 12 years of age and older will be eligible to take the vaccine soon, and by June 20th, we project that 65% of all eligible West Virginians will have the first dose at that point in time, 75% of our population that's 50 and above will have the first dose at that time, and 85% of our population that’s 65 and above will also have the first shot at that time,” Gov. Justice said.

“So that's the date we're going to go with. It just coincides perfectly with the celebration of this absolutely incredible State on its birthday.”

“Naturally, it will still be your choice, when you’re in public, whether you want to have a mask on or not,” Gov. Justice continued. “But the mandate will be lifted.”

In the run up to that date, the State is beginning another push to get more West Virginians vaccinated.

“We're going to call this our ‘Call to Arms’ initiative,” Gov. Justice said. “We need the arms to put shots into. So this is West Virginia's ‘Call to Arms,’ and we're going to absolutely target and achieve these things, but we need your help.”

The West Virginia Department of Education estimates that there are 78,000 students ages 12-15 who are eligible for the vaccine in the state’s K-12 schools.

“As soon as 12-to-15-year-olds are eligible for the vaccine, we will start that day or the next day with delivery,” said West Virginia Joint Interagency Task Force Director Jim Hoyer. “We are going to open up at the Governor's direction to make sure that, when we do clinics in schools, they are available to not just the 12-to-15-year-olds, but also to entire families who still may have not gotten the vaccine.”

Gov. Justice announced Friday that the State of West Virginia has now administered 1,311,329 vaccine doses out of a total allotment of 1,561,480 doses from the federal government; an overall administration rate of 84.0%.

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