Our community has been leading the nation in doing our part to curb the spread of COVID-19 and get the vaccine when eligible. Thanks to your hard work, we’re nearing the point where our businesses and gatherings can safely return to normal. A healthy summer with the people we cherish and the activities we love is on the horizon, and we can get there sooner - and ensure it lasts - by getting vaccinated if you haven’t already, and encouraging others to do the same.
In Hennepin County, 68% of residents age 16 and older have had at least one dose of the vaccine - a great achievement for a county of our size, but I want to make sure those who are still waiting to get their first appointment know what resources are available to them.
Vaccines appointments are available through the following resources:
Lifting COVID Restrictions
Yesterday, Governor Walz announced a three-step timeline to end nearly all COVID-19 restrictions by May 28, and end the statewide masking requirement once 70% of Minnesotans aged 16 years and older get their vaccine, or by July 1.
This announcement comes as more than 2.6 million Minnesotans have been vaccinated and is on track to vaccinate 70% of Minnesotans by the end of June.
Step One took place today a noon. It included initial steps to relax some restrictions, primarily in outdoor settings:
- Removes limits for outdoor dining, events, and other get-togethers, and ends the mask requirement outdoors except at large venues with over 500 people.
- Eliminates the state-established mandatory closing time for bars, restaurants, and food and beverage service at other places of public accommodation.
Step Two begins on May 28. Remaining capacity and distancing limits will come to an end, including for indoor events and gatherings. The requirements that will remain include:
- Face coverings indoors and for outdoor events exceeding 500 people.
- Businesses and other venues must have plans to keep their employees and customers safe – as they have from the beginning of the pandemic – guided only by a minimal universal state guidance document that includes no new requirements.
Step Three takes place once 70 percent of Minnesotans age 16 years and older – 3,087,404 Minnesotans – get at least one dose of the vaccine, but no later than July 1:
- The remaining face covering requirement and the requirement for preparedness plans will end. Work on vaccines will continue, and local jurisdictions and entities may set their own mask policies.
Asian Pacific American Heritage Month
May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, where we celebrate generations of Asian and Pacific Islanders who have contributed to America's history and are instrumental in its future success. As a member of the Minnesota Asian Pacific (MAP) Caucus, I’m incredibly proud of my colleagues and our constituency of Minnesotans helping to make our state a more equitable and enriched place to live.