California’s restrictions, which go into effect on Wednesday, require masks “for all individuals in all indoor public settings, regardless of vaccination status.”
New York’s mandate requires masks indoors, regardless of vaccination status, at healthcare and adult care facilities and schools. Masks are also required at indoor public places that don’t require proof of vaccination.
Both states have seen a steep increase in coronavirus infections just as more cases of the omicron variant have been detected across the country. In California, the per capita rate of cases has jumped 47% in the past two weeks, according to The Associated Press.
New York and California, whose mandates will remain in effect until Jan. 15, join Washington, Oregon, Illinois, New Mexico, Nevada and Hawaii, which already have similar restrictions in place.
In a statement last week, Hochul alluded to many people in her state who have refused vaccination.
“We shouldn’t have reached the point where we are confronted with a winter surge, especially with the vaccine at our disposal, and I share many New Yorkers’ frustration that we are not past this pandemic yet,” she said.
California is also ordering unvaccinated people who attend indoor events of 1,000 or more people to have a negative test within one or two days, depending on the type of test.