a black graffiti outline of a mask sketched onto a white background with the word covid-19 below

COVID-19 death toll in US nears 600,000

This article first appeared in Minneapolis Labor Review. MINNEAPOLIS — As the Labor Review went to press June 17, the Centers for Disease Control reported that 597,965 people had died in the U.S. from COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic. Both the number of COVID cases and COVID deaths are on a downward trend, leading states —including Minnesota — to rescind mask mandates and ease up on COVID restrictions or eliminate restrictions altogether. But that’s only possible because of the rising number of people who have been vaccinated, officials say. “Our COVID-19 numbers are at their lowest since the earliest days of the pandemic and life is getting back to normal because Minnesotans rolled up their sleeves and the vaccines work,” Governor Tim Walz announced June 16.