New York —

Governor Cuomo extended a privilege that only religious and Memorial Day ceremonies had

New Yorkers dream of a “normal” summer after a mournful spring

Andrés Correa Guatarasma / Courtesy

Pressured by a civil lawsuit, the Governor of New YorkAndrew Cuomo yesterday suspended the outright ban on social gatherings of any size, issuing a new executive order that says that up to 10 people can be together as long as they comply with other guidelines social distancing taken during the pandemic.

The order, issued on the eve of Memorial Day weekend, represents one of the biggest steps the state has taken to relax the rules taken in March in an extreme effort to reduce coronavirus infections.

It does not necessarily pave the way for a typical summer vacation or activity. The order still requires people who meet to follow “protocols of social distancing, cleaning and disinfection required by the Department of Health ”.

That means people still need to stay at least 6 feet away from each other, or wear a face covering when they can’t keep that gap in public.

Earlier this week, Cuomo had signed an order allowing gatherings of up to 10 people only for religious services and Memorial Day commemorations.

That restriction caused a lawsuit of the New York Civil Liberties Union (NYCLU), who said that if it was safe to congregate in order to honor veterans and practice religion, the Constitution requires that the same right be extended to people who gather for other reasons.

The NYCLU presented the lawsuit on behalf of Linda Bouferguen, New York City resident, who, according to the group, was twice arrested outside City Hall for protesting the state shutdown, the Associated Press reported.

New Jersey announced similar rules, allowing groups of up to 25 people outdoors and up to 10 indoors. Connecticut It has allowed the reopening of restaurants with outdoor tables.