Less than three months after he urged New Yorkers to “mask Up” for flu season, New York City Mayor Eric Adams on Monday called on city businesses to require patrons to take off their masks before entering their establishments to deter robberies.
“We are putting out a clear call to all of our shops, do not allow people to enter the store without taking off their face mask,” Adams told Susan Richard of 1010 WINS. The mayor noted that the policy can deter crime because unmasked faces are more recognizable on surveillance cameras.
“Once they’re inside, they can continue to wear if they so desire to do so. But we need to use the technology we have available to identify those shoplifters and those who are committing serious crimes,” he said.
The mayor noted that the criminal element took advantage of COVID masking requirements during the pandemic to evade detection by surveillance cameras and the police.
“When you see these mask-wearing people, oftentimes it’s not about being fearful of the pandemic, it’s fearful of the police catching them for their deeds,” Adams said. “And we’re really putting the call out.”
As recently as last December, Adams was urging New Yorkers to don their masks everywhere to slow the spread of COVID-19 and other illnesses.
Adams wore a mask himself during press conference at City Hall on Dec. 20, as he warned of a winter surge in coronavirus cases, Fox News reported.
“With the holiday season in full swing and cases of COVID-19, flu and RSV rising, we are asking New Yorkers to protect themselves and their loved ones once again,” Adams said. “Mask up, get tested, get treated if you’re eligible, and, if you haven’t gotten your flu shot or your COVID-19 booster, we encourage you to roll up your sleeve,” he added.
A rigorous and extensive review of the scientific data concluded last month that neither surgical masks nor N95 masks made a difference in reducing the spread of COVID-19 and other respiratory illnesses.
The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, the world’s largest and most respected organization for evaluating health interventions, found that “there is just no evidence” that masks made any difference in reducing the spread of these diseases.
Meanwhile, the COVID booster shots the mayor recommended come with an unacceptable risk of serious adverse side effects, a waning of protection after only two months and a reported increase in the risk of hospitalization seven to nine months after injection.