Hudson rescinds municipal building mask mandate, opts against town-wide mandate

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Hudson rescinds municipal building mask mandate, opts against town-wide mandate
Masks are no longer required in Hudson municipal buildings following a vote by the Board of Health. (Photo/Dakota Antelman)

HUDSON – The Hudson Board of Health has rescinded its mask mandate for municipal buildings.

That decision is effective immediately. 

This came after a separate discussion back on Jan. 18 that featured public comment about the option for a broader town-wide mask mandate. The board voted to shelve the decision until Feb. 15 in a unanimous vote that night.

In their meeting on Tuesday, the board opted not to enact such a mandate.

“I feel Hudson has been a proactive member of that,” said Board Chair Michael Delfino. “…I do not feel that, at any time, Hudson needed a mask mandate and I still don’t feel that there should be a mask mandate at this time.” 

Christie Vaillancourt, a member of the board, affirmed Delfino’s sentiment. 

“If the people want to continue to wear the masks, they can continue that,” Vaillancourt said. “The people know what they need to do.”

Delfino did comment on the board’s pandemic response. He added that they’ve made the best decisions based on available data.

“The pandemic has taken us all by surprise, it’s taken a terrible toll on all of us,” he said. “Decisions are not the best decisions sometimes. But I still feel that we go in the right direction when we’re looking at things.”

“We get all of our opinions from the state Department of Health,” he added. “Whether you agree or disagree with what they present, they put the best facts out there.” 

The board continues to recommend that residents get vaccinated as the best means to protect themselves from COVID-19. 

“I’m very encouraged by Massachusetts,” Delfino said. “I think Hudson’s [vaccination] numbers are up there. The best advice of the board is to get vaccinated.” 

Surrounding cities and towns such as Marlborough, Southborough, Grafton, Westborough and Northborough had enacted mask mandates last month. They all voted to end their mask mandates last week, however. 

Separately, Shrewsbury voted to lift its mandate at a meeting on Tuesday, ending an order that first took effect back in October. 

Hudson had imposed its mask mandate for municipal buildings in September of last year.

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