Walmart, other Fort Worth stores relax COVID mask rules

The masks come off, but not all at once.

Many restaurants, retailers and other businesses in the Dallas-Fort Worth area are already relaxing their COVID mask requirements, a day after the CDC released new guidelines showing it is no longer essential for those with been vaccinated to wear masks indoors or outdoors during their public stay.

Walmart announced in a note to employees on Friday that, effective now, vaccinated customers would no longer be required to wear masks in stores.

Walmart also said that all field associates at U.S. stores would receive $ 75 bonuses on their paychecks for showing proof of vaccination – and, as of Tuesday, those employees would no longer have to wear face masks. job. (The masks can come off two weeks after an employee’s second dose of Pfizer or Moderna, or after the single injection of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, according to the memo.)

“As of today, customers and vaccinated members are encouraged to shop without a mask, and we will continue to request that customers and unvaccinated members wear masks in our stores and clubs,” it reads. in the memo signed by Walmart President and CEO John Furner and other executives. “We will update the signage in our facilities to reflect this.”

Sprout farmers market, which operates grocery stores across North Texas, will now “strongly encourage” but no longer require customers to wear masks. Other large retailers such as Walgreens and CVS have said they are reviewing their policies in light of the new CDC guidelines.

But it may take a while before everyone returns to the practice of exposing their nose and chin to the world while shopping.

A quick check of retail stores in northeast Tarrant County on Friday showed little noticeable change. At a Target store in Watauga, every customer visible from the front of the store appeared masked, per the company’s national requirements.

In east Fort Worth, the owner of Fort Worth Black Coffee, which opened in November 2019 near Texas Wesleyan University, said it intends to keep its mask requirement for customers and employees until June 1. But after that date, masks will be optional – “preferred mask” – for customers.

Employees will still wear masks while on duty after June 1, owner Mia Moss said.

“We just want to make sure that we keep our staff safe,” she said. “Companies are participating in it in a way.”

The new CDC guidelines won’t change much on buses, trains and other forms of public transport, either. The federal government has extended the face mask requirement for public transportation until September 13.

“Trinity Metro will continue to follow the federal mandate that requires passengers and employees to wear face masks in agency facilities and on all buses, trains and other transit vehicles,” said Wayne Gensler , vice president and chief operating officer of Trinity Metro. in an email.

Trinity Metro operates buses in the Fort Worth area as well as the TEXRail commuter train, and is also a co-owner of the Trinity Railway Express commuter line.

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Gordon Dickson joined the Fort Worth Star-Telegram in 1997. He is passionate about news reporting, and his rhythms include transportation, growth, urban planning, aviation, real estate, jobs and trends commercial. He is originally from El Paso and enjoys food, football, and long drives.


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