- Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Sunday described the transit mask warrants as a “matter of respect.”
- There has been an increase in the number of disruptions on planes in recent weeks.
- Buttigieg asked people to think about what transport workers “have done to keep you safe.”
- See more stories on the Insider business page.
US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Sunday backed mask warrants still in effect on planes and public transport as a “matter of respect”, following recent tips from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention which suggests fully vaccinated travelers may forgo covering their faces in many public spaces.
During an appearance on ABC’s “This Week,” host Martha Raddatz insisted on Buttigieg on the continued need to regulate masks on public transportation, despite many fully vaccinated Americans dine out and return to their fitness routine in gyms without a face mask.
“Well, some of the differences have to do with the physical space, some have to do with the fact that it’s a workplace where in some of these transit and travel situations people don’t have no choice, ”he said. “It’s a matter of safety, but it’s also a matter of respect.”
Raddatz also asked Buttigieg about the increase in violent unrest and verbal assaults on planes, which prompted some airlines to stop their offers of alcoholic beverages.
—This week (@ThisWeekABC) May 30, 2021
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Buttigieg called on the public to be courteous to transport workers, many of whom have gone through the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Remember what they went through, what they did to keep you safe and make sure you show some appreciation and respect to everyone from the bus driver, operator to a flight attendant. through the captain, ”he said. “They have been on the front lines of this pandemic. Their work has been called into question. They are here for your safety.”
Buttigieg also noted that while 2021 Memorial Day weekend traffic is considerably higher that last year it would take some time for the transportation system to return to pre-pandemic levels.
“As people come back we come out of one of the biggest shocks – perhaps the biggest shock – the American transportation system has ever known in terms of demands, schedules, all of that is changing and the system starts up again, “he said.