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NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — The City of New Orleans will soon lift its masking requirements, City Health Director Jennifer Avegno announced on Wednesday.

Beginning Thursday, March 3 at 6 a.m. the city’s indoor mask mandate will be lifted, Avegno stated in a press conference on Wednesday.

After weathering 5 waves of COVID Dr. Jennifer Avegno stood by the mitigation measures imposed by the city that included the masking and vaccine mandates saying New Orleans did better than surrounding areas.

The mitigation measures added to the city’s compliance with new CDC’s community assessment methods New Orleans now move forward.

It’s a welcome sign for business people like Dijonnaise Thompson.

“We have a lot of people that give us backlash and just a lot of backtalk when we ask about masks so I don’t think it’s gonna harm us in a way it will be more helpful than harmful,” said Thompson

The decision comes after city leaders report a stable amount of positive cases in the community. While the CDC and American Pediatric Association have not modified their COVID-19 policies for schools, masking is still strongly encouraged.

According to a tweet from the city, masks will still be required on public transportation and healthcare facilities for people over the age of 2.

As the city wraps up Carnival season, Avegno added the health department will continue to monitor positive tests and hospitalizations over the next 2 1/2 to see the impact of large crowding during Mardi Gras.

“It would be foolish to think we aren’t going to see an increase in cases after all of the events in the past few weeks,” Avegno stated.

However, Avegno also says that if cases continue to stay stable, the city will also lift its mandate requiring proof of vaccine or negative COVID-19 test in select businesses, restaurants, and other public places under the ruling. That day is scheduled for March 21.