The CDC announced on Thursday that fully vaccinated people do not need to wear masks indoors, signaling a huge step forward in the COVID-19 pandemic for the United States.
However, local and state governments, as well as private businesses, are free to create their own safety protocols, leaving many to wonder if they will be able to remove their masks indoors in their communities.
According to Insider, not all companies are ready to say goodbye to indoor masking just yet. Here’s where some of the biggest retailers and restaurants in the United States stand.
On Monday, the pharmacy chain updated its face mask policy, stating that “customers who are fully vaccinated are no longer required to wear face coverings inside of our stores, unless it is mandated by state or local regulations. Customers who are not fully vaccinated are asked to continue wearing face coverings, and employees are required to do so while at work.”
The chain has updated its face mask policy to reflect the CDC recommendations, stating that “in Costco locations where the state or local jurisdiction does not have a mask mandate, we will allow members and guests who are fully vaccinated to enter Costco without a face mask or face shield. We will not require proof of vaccination, but we ask for members’ responsible and respectful cooperation with this revised policy. Face coverings will still be required in healthcare settings, including Pharmacy, Optical, Hearing Aid.”
According to the chain’s website, which shows its latest COVID-19 protocol update as being from March 11, customers and employees are currently required to wear masks in their stores.
Customers and employees are currently required to wear masks in their stores, but the chain is in the process of reviewing its policies.
Customers and employees are still required to wear masks in their stores, as the company has not updated its mask policy yet.
Customers and employees are still required to wear masks in their stores. “As we have throughout the pandemic, we are reviewing current safety practices, the CDC's latest guidance, and soliciting feedback from associates to guide the next phase of our policy,” said the grocery store chain.
Customers and employees will still be required to wear masks in their stores.
According to the chain’s website, its restaurant teams “are wearing masks or face coverings, and gloves, and making masks available for customers in municipalities where they are required.” Audacy reached out for comment from the company regarding the CDC’s latest guidelines but did not receive a response at the time of publication.
Face masks are now optional at some of the grocery chain’s stores after the CDC’s announcement. The company’s website states that “face coverings are optional for fully vaccinated individuals inside Publix stores unless required by a state or local order or ordinance. Individuals who are not fully vaccinated are required to use face coverings over their noses and mouths while inside any Publix store.”
On Monday, Target updated its face mask policy, writing on its website that “given the CDC’s updated guidance, Target no longer requires fully vaccinated guests and team members to wear face coverings in our stores, except where it’s required by local ordinances. Face coverings continue to be strongly recommended for guests and team members who are not fully vaccinated and we continue our increased safety and cleaning measures, including social distancing, throughout our stores.”
Trader Joe’s has emerged as one of the first retailers to announce that it is updating its policy following the CDC announcement. “We encourage customers to follow the guidance of health officials, including, as appropriate, CDC guidelines that advise customers who are fully vaccinated are not required to wear masks while shopping,” said the grocery store chain.