The 20 million inhabitants of the American state of New York will be able to resume a normal life. “We have reached 70% vaccination [contre le Covid-19]. This is the national objective, and we reached it before the hour (…). This means that we can come back to life as we know it ”Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Tuesday (June 15). He then announced that all restrictions imposed by the state on commercial activities or social life were lifted.
New York is the first major US state to announce that it has crossed this threshold, which President Joe Biden has set himself the goal of achieving by US National Day on July 4. The state was at the epicenter of the epidemic in the spring of 2020, with more than 42,000 deaths, including 33,000 in New York City. The city, like the state as a whole, was extremely cautious about the virus for a long time, only lifting restrictions very gradually. “New Yorkers have always been tough, but the past year has proven just how tough”, added the elected Democrat, congratulating the inhabitants.
To celebrate the event, several buildings and emblematic places of the State will be illuminated from this Tuesday evening in blue and gold, such as the Empire State Building or Niagara Falls, with fireworks in New York Harbor and above the falls. The day before, the mayor of New York, Bill de Blasio, had already announced another form of celebration, with a large parade intended to honor “essential workers” on July 7 on Broadway.
The United States exceeds 600,000 deaths from Covid-19
This lifting of restrictions comes in New York as the country passed the threshold of 600,000 deaths due to Covid-19 on Tuesday since the start of the pandemic, according to figures from Johns Hopkins University. The United States is by far the country with the heaviest death toll linked to Covid-19, according to official data communicated by authorities around the world, ahead of Brazil and India.
“There are always too many lives lost”, Joe Biden said on Monday, citing a “Real tragedy”. “My thoughts are with all those who have lost a loved one”, he said from Brussels, where he was then for the NATO summit. “We still have work to do to defeat this virus. Now is not the time to let your guard down ”, he added, calling on Americans to get vaccinated ” as soon as possible “.
The immunization campaign, which has been carried out vigorously by the authorities since the authorization of the first vaccines in December, peaked in April, with up to more than four million injections per day. But its pace has since slowed sharply, and unvaccinated people still remain vulnerable to the disease.
Just over 52 percent of the U.S. population, or 174 million people, have already received at least one dose of one of the three vaccines licensed in the country, according to health officials.
Some small states are already achieving higher vaccination rates, starting with Vermont (northeast): its governor, Phil Scott, announced Monday that he had reached the rate of 80% of adults vaccinated, and proclaimed, he too, the lifting of restrictions as of Tuesday.