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St. Louis, Jackson County extend mask mandates

August 30, 2021 GMT

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Two of Missouri’s largest jurisdictions on Monday approved extensions of their mask mandates and another Kansas City health care system mandated COVID vaccinations for employees, as COVID-19 continues to cause a big spike in cases and hospitalizations.

St. Louis aldermen, on a voice vote with no opposition, approved an extension of the city’s indoor mask mandate through Sept. 29 at the request of Mayor Tishaura Jones. Meanwhile, the Jackson County Legislature voted to extend the public health order another month through Oct. 7.

St. Louis County’s mask mandate is on hold. The county has asked a judge to lift a preliminary injunction against the order, now that the County Council voted last week to support it.

Saint Luke’s Health System also announced Monday that it will require employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by Oct. 30. The move will affect about 35% of the system’s 12,000 employees who are not vaccinated yet.

A new nonprofit group also is suing seven school districts, along with elected officials in Kansas City and North Kansas City, over their mask mandates and quarantine policies. The Northland Parent Association filed the federal lawsuit on Sunday, The Kansas City Star reports.

Missouri’s COVID-19 dashboard showed 1,911 newly confirmed cases of the virus on Monday and no new deaths.