Publix brings back mask mandate for employees as delta variant surges

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TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Publix is making masks mandatory again for employees as coronavirus cases spike in Florida and concerns over the delta variant grow.

A spokesperson for the grocery chain confirmed to WFLA on Friday that Publix will once again require employees to wear face coverings over their noses and mouths regardless of their vaccination status. The new policy goes in effect Aug. 2.

Masks will not be required for customers but the spokesperson said, “we encourage customers to follow CDC guidance.”


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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated its guidance earlier this week to say fully-vaccinated Americans should mask up again in indoor spaces if they live in areas with “substantial and high” transmission of COVID. According to the CDC’s website, all Florida counties have high transmission with the exception of Glades County, which has just substantial transmission.

The spokesperson for Publix added that the company is encouraging, but not requiring, employees to get vaccinated.

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