FLORIDA — Passengers cheered as a JetBlue Airways staff member announced they would no longer be required to wear masks while traveling after a federal judge in Florida struck down the CDC’s nationwide requirement on Monday.
“I’ve been going up and down this coast, south Florida to New York for about 35 years… my company announced at this moment if you choose to you may remove your mask,” the staff member said.
U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle said the mask mandate exceeded the statutory authority of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Following the ruling, the Transportation Security Administration said it will no longer enforce a mask mandate in public transportation settings.
Federal officials had extended the mandate for commercial flights and in other public transportation settings, including on buses, ferries and subways, until at least May 3.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said the CDC continued recommending wearing a mask in public transit.
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy on Tuesday announced the end of the mask mandate on NJ Transit. MTA officials, however, said they would follow CDC guidelines and continue to enforce the mask mandate on subways, buses and railroads.