Senate drops mask requirements, following Brasília decree

senate masks
Senate President Rodrigo Pacheco. Photo: Pedro Gontijo/SF/CC-BY 4.0

Senate President Rodrigo Pacheco signed an order on Monday to waive mask requirements for anyone attending the upper chamber, putting an end to mask mandates that have been in place for 22 months.

In the lower house, however, masks are still mandatory — though many members ignore the rule. On Monday afternoon, House Speaker Arthur Lira had yet to say whether he will follow the Senate’s lead.

Mr. Pacheco’s decision is in line with a Federal District decree, where last Thursday, Governor Ibaneis Rocha ordered the end of mask requirements, even for closed spaces such as gyms and nightclubs. Brazil’s capital has seen Covid-19 cases dwindle, with 45 percent of ICU beds occupied as of today.