Major retailers call for masks to fight coronavirus

by Jordan Green

Walmart joined a growing number of nationwide retailers Monday who are requiring shoppers to wear masks while in stores in an attempt to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Walmart Chief Operating Officer Dacona Smith and Sam’s Club Chief Operating Officer Lance de la Rosa announced the decision in a news release July 15. The mandate went into effect Monday.

“As the number of confirmed cases has spiked in communities across the country recently, so too have the number and types of face covering mandates being implemented,” the two wrote. “Currently about 65 percent of our more than 5,000 stores and clubs are located in areas where there is some form of government mandate on face coverings. To help bring consistency across stores and clubs, we will require all shoppers to wear a face covering starting Monday, July 20. This will give us time to inform customers and members of the changes, post signage and train associates on the new protocols.”

Walmart has also reduced the number of entrances and exits available at its stores.

Other major retailers have also implemented mask mandates. CVS Pharmacies and Walgreens both told shoppers to start wearing masks Monday, as did retailers like Lowe’s. Apple, Best Buy, Costco, Kohl’s, and Menards are already ordering customers to wear masks.

Some major retailers have announced their intentions to create mask requirements in the near future. Aldi will require shoppers to cover their faces beginning July 27, and Target will follow suit Aug. 1.