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Masks No Longer Required Outside

By Catherine Cluett Pactol

Molokai logged three new COVID-19 cases last week, bring the island’s total to 79 since the pandemic began. The relatively low case count for the week indicates a decline in the two clusters that skyrocketed the island’s cases in the previous two weeks.

Last week, Gov. David Ige lifted the statewide mask mandate for all individuals outdoors, effective immediately. Mask wearing is still highly recommended outdoors when in large groups. The indoor mask mandate remains unchanged.

“The virus is still circulating in our community, and unvaccinated people are particularly at risk,” said Gov. Ige. “Until more people are vaccinated, we must continue to take precautions indoors and outdoors in large groups for the safety of our loved ones, neighbors and communities.”

Beginning June 1, Gov. Ige also announced that ocean sports competitions will be permitted, which includes surfing, canoeing and swimming events among others.

“The public health measures that we implemented for the State of Hawaii, along with the success of our vaccine program and the cooperation of our residents across the state, have brought us to this point,” said Ige. “We made these decisions based on the data and guidance from our public health officials.”

“As Hawaii’s vaccination rates go up and new COVID cases come down, we can take another step forward on our road to recovery,” said Mayor Michael Victorino. “I want to thank the governor and his team for working so closely with all county mayors to ensure that statewide changes consider the different needs of each island community.”

Last month, the Dept. of Education announced that all public schools will return to daily, in-person classes for all grades starting Aug. 3.

This includes extracurricular activities like clubs and athletics.

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