Publix, CVS join Walmart and Sam’s Club in requiring face masks


Publix Supermarkets and CVS Pharmacies joined a growing list of businesses requiring its customers to wear face coverings. Walmart and Sam’s Club made the announcement earlier this week.

Effective July 21, Publix will require customers to wear face coverings while shopping in its stores.

“With the number of coronavirus cases continuing to grow and current CDC guidance indicating face coverings can help slow the spread of COVID-19, we believe requiring face coverings in our stores is another way we can do our part to help protect our communities,” said Publix Director of Communications Maria Brous.

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Signs announcing the new requirement will be posted at store entrances, and in-store announcements will be made. This requirement will not apply to young children and those with medical conditions who are not able to wear face coverings. Publix remains committed to serving customers through all channels but encourages those who are not able to wear face coverings to consider using Publix Delivery and/or Curbside Pickup.

In addition to requiring face coverings, Publix previously implemented a number of process changes in our stores to safeguard the health and well-being of customers, associates and communities, including:

  • increased sanitation efforts through frequent and regular cleaning of high-touch surfaces like carts, door handles, PIN pads, ATMs and vending machines, using a disinfection cleaner before every store opens and throughout the day.
  • reduced store hours to allow extra time for store cleaning and preventive sanitation.
  • implemented contactless pay in all stores, allowing customers to pay by placing their smartphones or contactless pay-enabled credit or debit cards near a payment device rather than touching the PIN pad.
  • installed plexiglass shields at all registers and pharmacies to better protect both associates and customers.
  • implemented one-way shopping on each aisle to help with customer traffic flow.
  • initiated intercom announcements to remind customers to follow one-way shopping and maintain the recommended 6-foot distance between themselves, Publix associates and other shoppers.
  • provided store managers discretion to limit the number of customers inside stores. Stores under state or local ordinance to limit shoppers will continue to follow those guidelines.
  • provided store associates with masks to wear while at work and the option to wear non-latex plastic gloves.

Publix is actively monitoring the evolving pandemic and will continue to review guidance provided by the CDC, as well as state and local agencies.

CVS implements face coverings on July 20th

CVS Health (NYSE: CVS) Chief Operating Officer Jon Roberts provided the following update on the use of face coverings at CVS Pharmacy locations:

“Since the pandemic began, we’ve done everything we can to keep people safe and healthy. This includes requiring that store employees wear face coverings and encouraging our customers to do so as well. In any community with state or local laws mandating the use of face coverings, we’ve made that very clear through signage and other reminders.

“With the recent spike in COVID-19 infections, we’re joining others in taking the next step and requiring all customers to wear face coverings when entering any of our stores throughout the country effective Monday, July 20. To be clear, we’re not asking our store employees to play the role of enforcer. What we are asking is that customers help protect themselves and those around them by listening to the experts and heeding the call to wear a face covering.”

More information on steps CVS Health has taken to address the COVID-19 pandemic is available at the company’s frequently updated COVID-19 resource center.

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