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Target Eliminates Mask Mandate for Customers and Employees

As COVID-19 cases wane across the country, Target is no longer requiring customers or employees to wear masks in stores.

The big-box chain is one of the first major retailers to eliminate its mask mandate, as states across the U.S. make similar moves. Apple also reportedly dropped its mask mandate this week for guests in certain stores across the U.S., though employees are still required to wear masks.

“As cases continue to decline across the country, Target will not require our U.S. team members or guests to wear masks, as local regulations allow,” read an FAQ section on the company’s website announcing the change. “We’ll follow all state and local COVID-19 safety regulations and encourage our team members and guests to consult the latest public health guidance, get vaccinated and make decisions to keep themselves and their families safe.”

Earlier this month, New York state’s indoor mask mandate to expired without renewal, though some businesses still are encouraging or requiring face coverings on their own.

As mask mandates disappear, some companies are also rolling back their vaccination policies. Adidas confirmed to FN that it has adjusted its employee vaccination policy in the U.S. in light of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to turn down the Biden administration’s vaccine-or-testing requirement for businesses with 100 or more employees.

“Though no longer required, we strongly encourage all employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19 and will continue to require all employees in the U.S. to submit their vaccination status by March 1,” Adidas told FN in a statement.

While Target does not require employees to get vaccinated, the company offers benefits to employees who get the shots, such as two hours of pay per dose and free Lyft rides to and from the appointments. Target has also partnered with CVS locations in its stores to help provide vaccines to guests and team members.

“We continue to believe that getting vaccinated is the best way to protect against the COVID-19 virus,” Target wrote on its website.

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