Just days after a federal judge in Florida struck down the Biden administration's mask mandate for airplanes and other forms of public transit, calling it unlawful, a Western New York Public Transit authority announced that it is reinstating its mask mandate.

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On Monday, after the court decision in Florida, several US airline carriers announced that masks would now be optional on their aircraft, including  Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Delta, JetBlue, United Airlines, and Southwest Airlines.

On Tuesday, the RTS (Regional Transit Service) in Rochester, NY announced that masking would now be optional for both customers and employees, falling in line with the airlines, rideshare services, and several other public transportation entities.

The RTS Posted the following on Tuesday:

Based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) lifting the mask mandate for public transit, Regional Transit Service (RTS) is making masks optional for customers and employees on all RTS vehicles and in all RTS facilities, effective immediately.

Then, on Wednesday morning, the RTS reversed course and issued the following statement:

Following conversations yesterday with the office of New York State Governor Kathy Hochul, it was made clear that the mask requirement on public transit in New York remains in effect for now, pursuant to a March 2, 2022, determination by the New York State Department of Health. Therefore, starting immediately, customers and employees must wear a face mask that covers their nose and mouth on all RTS buses and in the public areas of all RTS facilities.

The 'new' policy is essentially the same as it was before the Tuesday decision, as all customers and employees must wear a face mask that covers their nose and mouth on all RTS buses and in the public areas.

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