Starting today, citizens in Brasília will no longer be required to use masks in open spaces — according to a gubernatorial decree from October 26. Mask use remains mandatory in closed public spaces.
Local authorities have distributed over 2 million masks since the beginning of the pandemic. Between April 2020 — when mandates became effective — and September of this year, 148 citizens received fines for breaking mask rules, including one former Education Minister. Over 1,500 businesses were punished for not enforcing mask mandates.
Still, Brazilian epidemiologists believe that lifting safety measures with little to no tradeoff could fuel new spikes of transmission and deaths — especially among unvaccinated people.