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US to Lift Vaccine Mandate for Foreign Entries and Government Workers

Leo Timm
Leo Timm covers China-related news, culture, and history. Follow him on Twitter at @kunlunpeaks
Published: May 3, 2023
Anthony Ramos, a Customs and Border Protection officer, checks Chris Layman, Katy Layman, 21 mths old, and Natalie Layman in at the passport control area January 19, 2007 at Miami International Airport in Miami, Florida. (Image: Joe Raedle/Getty Images)

The end of the national public emergency for the COVID-19 pandemic also means the end of vaccine mandates requiring proof of vaccination for foreign citizens, federal government workers, and contractors employed by the U.S. government, the White House announced on Monday (May 1).

Beginning on Jan. 31, 2020, the then-Trump administration declared a pubic health emergency as the SARS-CoV-2 virus spread from mainland China; the president upgraded it to a national emergency that March.

The Biden administration announced in April that the national emergency will end on Thursday, May 11, at which time the immigration controls will also reflect the new situation.

Arrivals will no longer have to show proof of up-to-date vaccination against COVID-19 as of May 11.

“The requirements [to be removed] are among the last vestiges of some of the more coercive measures taken by the federal government to promote vaccination as the deadly virus raged,” AP reported.

Eighty-one percent of Americans, nearly 300 million people, have received at least one shot of the COVID-19 vaccines, which were controversially made mandatory for months in some states to use public services, and for many government workers.