Michigan likely to ease COVID-19 restrictions as mask rules relaxed

Posted at 6:35 AM, May 20, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-20 06:35:47-04

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer is expected to announce plans to ease COVID-19 restrictions in the coming days.

It comes as retailers and other businesses relax their safety rules following the state changing its mask guidance.

As of Wednesday, the state's Vacc to Normal tracker is at 56.8% of Michiganders 16 and older with at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.

Kroger is the latest company to follow CDC guidance and allow customers and employees who are fully vaccinated to stop wearing masks.

It joined other businesses like Costco, Target, Walmart, and more to relax their mask policies.

It's happening as the state waits to hit Step 2 in the MI Vacc to Normal Plan – 60% – which would increase capacity at sports stadiums, conference centers, banquet halls and funeral homes to 25%. Gyms could go to 50%, and the 11 p.m. curfew for indoor bars and restaurants would be lifted.

The governor's office released a statement, saying in part, "With the CDC recommending that fully vaccinated people can safely return to normal life, we feel confident that our state can begin taking even greater steps to get back to normal now that a majority of Michiganders have received their vaccine. I would expect an announcement in the coming days or week."

Also Wednesday, the Archdiocese of Detroit announced it would be dropping its mask requirement for people who are vaccinated.