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CDC: Fully vaccinated people can travel again, should still take precautions

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Fully vaccinated people can safely travel domestically and abroad again, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced in new guidance on Friday.

“Fully vaccinated travelers are less likely to get and spread COVID-19,” the guidance said.

At a Friday briefing, CDC Director Rochelle Walensky emphasized that the agency still urges that “all travelers, regardless of vaccination status, should continue to wear masks on planes buses, trains, and other forms of public transportation, while traveling.”

Those traveling within the United States, according to the CDC, don’t need to get a COVID-19 test before or self-quarantine after a trip.

Regarding overseas travel, fully vaccinated people don’t need a test beforehand unless their destination country requires it and don’t have to self-quarantine upon returning to the U.S.

Walensky on Friday also cautioned that fully vaccinated individuals who are traveling abroad should still get tested three to five days after returning the U.S.

The agency deems someone fully vaccinated two weeks after receiving the final required dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. The new guidance, it should be noted, does not apply to unvaccinated individuals. For those not fully vaccinated, the CDC urges them to keep refraining from travel.

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @DouglasPBraff.

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American and Southwest stand by vaccine mandate, despite Abbott’s ban

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American Airlines and Southwest Airlines are still planning to comply with President Biden’s executive order regarding the COVID-19 vaccine. The order requires all their employees to be vaccinated by Dec. 8t. As a result, they will be ignoring Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s ban on vaccine mandates.

Abbott announced his own executive order, effectively banning mandates even from private employers, on Tuesday. “In another instance of federal overreach, the Biden Administration is now bullying many private entities into imposing COVID-19 vaccine mandates, causing workforce disruptions that threaten Texas’ continued recovery from the COVID-19 disaster,” Abbott said. “The COVID-19 vaccine is safe, effective, and our best defense against the virus, but should remain voluntary and never forced.”

Yet both airlines are requiring their employees to be vaccinated by Nov. 24. This comes despite Southwest’s impromptu cancellation of over 2,000 flights over the weekend. At the time, the airline blamed the cancellations on air traffic control and weather conditions. However, SaraACarter.com was unable to verify that any other airline had to cancel near as many flights for the same reasons. This has left many to speculate that Southwest actually cancelled flights due to their employees walking out as a direct result of the mandate.

Reporter Jack Posobiec tweeted out a flyer circulating among the anti-vaxx Southwest employees. Currently, they are planning a protest outside of Southwest headquarters next Monday. The protest will be called “Freedom Not Force.”

Southwest told Reuters it “would be expected to comply with the President’s Order to remain compliant as a federal contractor.” In addition, American similarly said Abbott’s order does not change anything.

You can follow Jenny Goldsberry on Twitter @jennyjournalism.

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