JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – This weekend could be the first weekend of freedom for some after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that people who are vaccinated can take their masks off pretty much everywhere.
People in Riverside were split on this issue, with some being vaccinated and choosing to not wear a mask and some not vaccinated deciding to wear masks. But all were excited to see hope on the horizon.
Five Points in Riverside was filled with people out to have fun on a Saturday night.
“Knowing that you don’t have to wear a mask, it feels good,” said Jasmine Byers.
The CDC recommended Thursday that people who are vaccinated don’t have to wear masks indoors and outdoors.
Those who are vaccinated are also not required to practice social distancing.
The guidelines still calls for wearing masks on planes, buses, hospitals, prisons and homeless shelters.
Some bars in Five Points don’t require masks anymore.
Kamari Jones says he’s not fully vaccinated yet.
“If you’re not you should wear your mask to be courteous of other people,” Jones said.
Barry Covington is fully vaccinated, but always keeps a mask on him.
“I just carry it in my pocket so if I need it,” he said.
Covington says it feels good to not have to wear a mask but he still wants to be courteous of others.
“We don’t want to be responsible for maybe carrying a virus that gets transmitted to somebody that has a terrible reaction to it,” he said.
Psychologist Dr. Terri Wall says she’s seeing some people who have anxiety about it being too soon to ditch the masks, even if they’re fully vaccinated.
“You’re going to see a much slower removal of masks,” Wall said. “We build habits in our daily lives. When you build a habit and stop doing it, it can feel off.”
The new CDC guidance should help clear the way for reopening workplaces schools and other venues.