NYC Mayor Eric Adams says city will appeal judge's decision striking down mask mandate for 2 to 4 year olds

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New York City Mayor Eric Adams said on Friday that he is planning on appealing a Staten Island judge’s injunction which struck down the city’s mask mandate for 2 to 4-year-olds in schools and daycare.

Richmond County Supreme Court Judge Ralph Porzio threw out the mask mandate for toddlers aged 2-4 years olds on Friday, calling it “arbitrary, capricious and unreasonable,” adding that it is “void and unenforceable,” according to Fox 5 New York. 

Adams later vowed to file an appeal and ask for a stay, requesting that the mask mandate remain in place for the time being. He cited a slight increase in COVID-19 cases as a reason to extend the mask mandate.

“I think it’s imperative that due to the rise in cases that we’re seeing as slight as they are, our plans were to take a week to assess the numbers before removing masks with two to four years old,” Adams said.

He added that the city would “comply with any ruling from the judge.”

Eric Adams speaks during a Feb. 15, 2022, press conference
(YouTube/ New York City)

Adams said that his initial plan was to wait a week and then “assess the numbers” before removing the mask requirement for 2 to 4 year olds, but said Porzio’s ruling changed that.

New York City Mayor Eric Adams attends an event to raise the Ukrainian flag in support of the people of Ukraine at the Bowling Park in the heart of financial district. March 23, 2022.
(Photo by Jimin Kim/VIEWpress via Getty Images)

Adams previously said on March 22 that he would make masks optional for kids aged 2-4 years old on April 4 if low levels of risk were present for contracting COVID-19.

“It’s now been two weeks since we removed the mask mandate for K-12 public school children, and our percent positivity in schools has, thankfully, remained low. Each day, we review the data, and if we continue to see low levels of risk, then, on Monday, April 4, we will make masks optional for 2-4 year old children in schools and daycare settings. This will allow us sufficient time to evaluate the numbers and make sound decisions for our youngest New Yorkers. We must get this right for the health of our kids, and I refuse to jeopardize their safety by rushing a decision,” Adams said.

New York Mayor Eric Adams speaks during a news conference at City Hall in New York City, U.S., January 24, 2022.
(Reuters/Brendan McDermid)

During the Friday press conference, Adams said that New York City is seeing a “slight uptick” in COVID-19 cases and “we want to be prepared.”

Over the past seven days, an average of 2.67% of daily COVID-19 tests in New York City have been positive, which is up from the 2.33% daily average over the past 28 days.

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