**FILE** Courtesy of Virginia Department of Health via Twitter

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention may have eased its guidance on mask-wearing and social distancing, but leaders in the D.C. region are hesitant to move too quickly and emphasized the need for more vaccinations.

People nationwide rejoiced Thursday when the CDC abruptly lifted its recommendations on mask-wearing and social distancing for fully vaccinated people, but D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said city officials will discuss the new recommendations before taking action.

“Consistent with past practice, we are immediately reviewing the CDC guidance and will update DC Health guidance accordingly,” the mayor tweeted. “It is critical that every resident, worker and visitor get vaccinated to help us crush the virus. The vaccine is safe, free and accessible. Don’t wait to be vaccinated.”

Maryland Health Secretary Dennis Schrader said the state won’t change its indoor mask mandate until 70% of its adults are vaccinated.

“We have to be real careful not to get ahead of ourselves,” he said, WTOP reported.

In Virginia, Gov. Ralph Northam also said the state’s mask mandate will stay in place for now.

“Ultimately, this reinforces the importance of getting vaccinated,” Northam said in a statement, WTOP reported. “Vaccines are our pathway out of this pandemic, and they are how we can all get back to doing what we love.”

This correspondent is a guest contributor to The Washington Informer.

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