Gov. J.B. Pritzker has lifted the state’s mask mandate for fully vaccinated residents.
The announcement Monday came just days after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevent eased its own mask-wearing guidance for fully vaccinated people.
But some people aren’t ready to give up their masks just yet — and we should be OK with that, said Jocelyn Carter, director of clinical training and an associate professor of clinical psychology at DePaul University.
“Respect what people’s decisions are when they’re not negatively impacting other people around them,” Carter said.
For some people, the past year has been traumatic and full of uncertainty, Carter said, not just because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but because of police shootings and brutality and anti-Asian rhetoric and hate crimes.
That trauma can inform a person’s decision to wear a mask — or ditch it.
Carter said she hopes individuals move away from shaming people for wearing masks, whether it be for fear of the virus or because they are immunocompromised.
“When people make choices that are different than ours, we want to protect ourselves. We think that it means maybe our choice is the wrong one,” Carter said. “I would encourage us to say, well both things are true — if I don’t want to wear a mask, it’s OK that this person does.”