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Parents question why New York's school mask mandate remains in place while COVID restrictions are lifted across Tri-State Area

As more COVID restrictions are lifted, New York parents question why students still need to wear mas 02:05

NEW YORK  -- As we see more COVID restrictions lifted in the Tri-State Area, some parents want to know why their kids still have to keep their faces covered in class.

Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro says video of state leaders celebrating reveals a double standard.

"The leadership of the state of New York convened in a hotel convention center, no masks, clearly enjoying themselves," he said.

He says everyone appears to be returning to a sense of normalcy while parents still have no say when it comes to kids wearing masks at school.

"There is a need to get our kids back to normal," he told CBS2's Thalia Perez.


Some frustrated parents say it's wrong that children spend six hours a day in a classroom wearing a mask while restrictions are dropping everywhere else.

"The mask really doesn't help. It just causes more issues, especially for the little ones that can't keep it on. You constantly got to tell them, and they feel like they're doing wrong. It's not a nice feeling for the little ones," teacher Denise Martienz said.

Thursday night was the first New York Islanders game under the updated UBS Arena policy that makes mask-wearing optional and lifts the proof of vaccination or negative test result requirement to enter the arena.

"I still wanna be safe. I'm gonna wear my mask. I'm vaccinated. I'm boosted. I'm wearing my mask. It's in my pocket," one fan said.

"I mean, you can still get COVID even though you're vaccinated. So I just wanna be safe," another fan said.

New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy dropped the state's mask policy for schools. That will take effect the second week of March.


Mario Roa is a retired New York City school teacher and has two children in Yonkers public schools. He says enough is enough.

"At this point, it's like a punishment," he said.

Gov. Kathy Hochul has maintained that she will consider dropping the policy in schools, but not until after the winter break.

CBS2 reached out to the governor's office about the mask mandate but did not hear back.

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