(PresidentialWire.com)- Due to an increase in coronavirus infections in the District of Columbia, the United States Supreme Court said on Monday that it would no longer allow the public to attend judicial proceedings in person during April.
Even though COVID-19 infections have remained relatively low across the country, many high-profile political personalities in Washington, D.C., including members of President Joe Biden’s Cabinet and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, have lately tested positive for the virus.
The highly transmissible BA.2 Omicron form is responsible for the bulk of infections in the United States. It has prompted the restoration of infection-rate limitations and warnings in certain other countries.
The Supreme Court announced that “courtroom access would be limited to the Justices, essential Court officials, lawyers in the scheduled cases, and journalists having full-time press credentials issued by the Supreme Court.”
There will be a live audio stream of the oral arguments.
On Monday, Philadelphia became the first major U.S. city to re-impose a mask ordinance, requiring face masks in indoor public places like restaurants, schools, and businesses.
The city’s chief health official stated that she wished to prevent a fresh wave from being triggered by an omicron subvariant.
Starting April 18, health inspectors will begin enforcing the mask requirement at municipal companies.
According to Dr. Cheryl Bettigole, the city’s health commissioner, the highly transmissible BA.2 subvariant of omicron has spread swiftly throughout Europe and Asia and has recently become prevalent in the United States.
Bettigole said many of our people would be affected, and perhaps too late, if we fail to act now, knowing that every prior wave of infections has been followed by a wave of hospitalizations and ultimately a wave of fatalities.
Bettigole also feels that this is our opportunity to stay ahead of the pandemic by donning our masks until we learn more about the severity of this new variant.
Following the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention instructions that focused less on case statistics and more on hospital capacity, most states and localities abandoned their masking rules in February and early March.
At the time, the CDC stated that most Americans could safely remove their masks.
Philadelphia’s mask law was repealed on March 2nd.