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BCHD: New Restrictions Bring 'A Lot To Look Forward To,' But Pandemic 'Still Isn't Over'

(Lauren Chapman/IPB News)

New, loosened COVID-19 restrictions took effect in Michigan on Monday.

With over 50 percent of eligible residents at least partially vaccinated, Michigan officials have lifted capacity limits on outdoor gatherings and increased indoor capacity to 50 percent. Additionally, masks are now only required for unvaccinated individuals indoors. 


"For those individuals who are fully vaccinated, they don't really need to worry about wearing their face masks outdoors or indoors, or worry about those social distancing guidelines that we were all consumed with for this last year," Berrien County Health Department spokesperson Gillian Conrad said.


Conrad “there’s a lot to look forward to” this summer with the loosened restrictions – including graduations, weddings and barbecues – but she said the pandemic still isn’t over.


“The virus is still in our communities, still has the potential to wreak havoc on people who are unvaccinated," Conrad said. "We still need to be mindful of those variants. So, it’s a ‘both/and’ in this situation.”


Michigan's vaccine dashboard shows less than 45 percent of Berrien County residents age 12 and over have been fully vaccinated, while almost 50 percent have received at least one dose.


Michigan’s remaining COVID-19 restrictions are expected to end July 1.


Contact Gemma atgdicarlo@wvpe.orgor follow her on Twitter at@gemma_dicarlo.


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Gemma DiCarlo comes to Indiana by way of Athens, Georgia. She graduated from the University of Georgia in 2020 with a degree in Journalism and certificates in New Media and Sustainability. She has radio experience from her time as associate producer of Athens News Matters, the flagship public affairs program at WUGA-FM.