New York State has adopted the new mask and social distancing guidelines for those vaccinated from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Under the recent CDC recommendations, if you’re fully vaccinated you no longer have to wear a mask or social distance except where it's required by law or by businesses, or in certain public places such as public transportation, in schools, homeless shelters, correctional facilities and health care settings.
Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said businesses and other private entities are not required to accept the guidelines and can set their own rules.
So what does that mean for wearing masks in stores around Long Island? Here are some of the mask-wearing policies we know.
This is not a full list of stores across the Island, and some have not yet announced changes to their mask policies. We will be updating this list as we learn more.
Aldi: Aldi will no longer mandate the use of face coverings for customers who are fully vaccinated, according to a statement on its website. Aldi requires that unvaccinated customers continue all appropriate safety precautions, including wearing masks and physically distancing, to protect themselves and others. Effective May 26, ALDI employees who are fully vaccinated will no longer be required to wear a face covering.
King Kullen: King Kullen has updated its policy to say face masks are no longer required for customers and associates who are fully vaccinated, including at its Wild by Nature locations, according to a statement from a spokesperson. Associates will be required to show proof of vaccination if not wearing a mask, and anyone unvaccinated should continue wearing them and taking safety precautions. King Kullen still "encourages all vendors, associates and shoppers to continue to wear masks in its stores and remains committed to its enhanced cleaning protocols and safety measures," the statement said.
Lidl: Fully vaccinated individuals can visit Lidl stores without masks or protective facial coverings wherever legally permitted, according to a statement on its website. Unvaccinated individuals should continue to wear masks, the company said.
ShopRite: According to ShopRite’s parent company Wakefern’s website, ShopRite will continue to follow state and local mask mandates, which allow vaccinated people not to wear masks. The company says the new relaxed CDC guidance has caused some confusion among the public, and it asks for patience and continued cooperation while the company works through the changes in guidance. Employees are required to wear masks.
Stew Leonard's: Stew Leonard's told Newsday it will not require customers to wear masks. Employees are still required to wear masks.
Stop & Shop: According to a statement from a spokesperson, Stop & Shop currently continues to require that customers wear masks while shopping in stores.
Trader Joe's: In accordance with CDC guidelines, customers who are fully vaccinated are no longer required to wear masks while shopping in stores, according to a statement from a spokesperson. At this time, masks are still required for employees.
Uncle Giuseppe's: Chief executive Carl F. DelPrete told Newsday that customers will not be required to wear masks. Employees are still required to wear masks.
Whole Foods: Customers who are fully vaccinated may shop in stores without a mask, according to a statement on Whole Foods' website. Individuals not fully vaccinated are asked to continue to wear a mask for their safety and the safety of others. Whole Foods team members continue to be required to wear face masks while in stores.
CVS: The pharmacy said in a statement that customers who are fully vaccinated are no longer required to wear masks inside stores. Employees are still required to wear masks while at work, and those who are not fully vaccinated should also continue wearing masks.
Walgreens: Walgreens will no longer require fully vaccinated customers to wear face coverings inside stores, according to a statement on its website. Customers who are not fully vaccinated are asked to continue wearing face coverings, and employees will continue to wear them while working.
Rite Aid: The pharmacy said in a statement that masks will continue to be required for all customers and associates, and the company will update this policy as appropriate.
Starbucks: The chain announced in a statement on its website that face coverings are now optional for vaccinated customers.
Chipotle: Fully vaccinated guests do not need to wear a mask inside of Chipotle restaurants, according to a statement on Chipotle’s website. Employees are required to wear masks.
Other major retailers
Bed Bath & Beyond: Customers are required to wear a mask in stores unless they’re fully vaccinated and "the store is located in a state/location that has lifted its indoor mask mandates," a company spokesperson said.
Best Buy: Fully vaccinated customers and employees are no longer required to wear face coverings in its stores, but masks will be available for any customer who wants one, the company said on its website Tuesday. Hand sanitizer will also continue to be available, the company said, and employees working in customers’ homes will still be required to wear a face covering, even if fully vaccinated.
BJ's Wholesale Club: Members and guests who are fully vaccinated can enter without a face covering, the company said on its website. Face coverings are still required in health care settings, including the optical department.
Costco: The wholesaler announced on its website that members and guests who are fully vaccinated can enter without a face covering. Face coverings are still required in health care settings, including the pharmacy, optical and hearing aid departments.
Home Depot: Associates and customers who are fully vaccinated can enter without a face covering, the company said on its website.
IKEA: In a statement on the company website, the home furnishings store announced that its current mask and social distancing protocols will stay in place for the time being for both employees and customers.
Kohl's: Kohl's is ending its mask requirement for fully vaccinated customers, according to its website. "We will continue to strongly recommend that non-vaccinated customers and associates wear masks in our stores," the announcement said.
Lowe's: In an update on its website Wednesday, Lowe's said it would "align with the CDC’s new guidance."
Target: The company announced on its website that it no longer requires fully vaccinated guests and team members to wear face coverings in its stores.
Walmart and Sam's Club: Fully vaccinated associates, customers and members may work or shop without wearing face coverings in its stores, clubs, distribution centers, fulfillment centers and offices, the company said on its website.
Malls and shopping centers
Americana Manhasset: According to a spokesperson, since the Americana is an outdoor shopping center, individual stores are following their corporate brand policy regarding masks for customers and employees.
Broadway Commons: The Hicksville shopping center will allow vaccinated customers to go without a mask in the common areas, according to a representative. However, each store in the mall will have its own mask policy posted.
Shoppes at East Wind: In a statement, The Shoppes at East Wind said masks are no longer required in outdoor spaces. For indoor spaces and the carousel, employees and customers who are fully vaccinated do not have to wear masks; unvaccinated employees and customers must wear masks indoors. The shopping center management reserves the right to ask for proof of vaccination at any time.
Simon Property Group Inc.: An updated statement on the website of the company that operates Roosevelt Field, Smith Haven Mall in Lake Grove and Walt Whitman Shops in Huntington Station says fully vaccinated customers can enter without a mask or face shield at locations "where there is no state or local jurisdictional mask mandate." Those who are not fully vaccinated should continue wearing a mask.
Tanger Outlets, Deer Park and Riverhead: The outlets are evaluating the current policies along with federal, state and local guidance but are making no changes at this time, said a spokesperson, who added there may be differing policies within each store’s space as guided by their corporate policies. Masks or facial coverings are required by all shoppers, team members and associates on all Tanger properties at all times in all of the property areas, according to the outlets' website.
Westfield South Shore: A spokesperson for the mall in Bay Shore said it "continues to follow CDC and local guidelines regarding the wearing of masks and other health and safety policies," but added shoppers should check with specific retailers about any additional requirements.