As mask mandates disappear, businesses enforce their own rules

Posted at 3:00 PM, May 19, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-19 15:00:15-04

Companies are beginning to change their mask requirements after the CDC said that fully vaccinated people don’t have to wear a mask indoors anymore. While bigger stores, like Publix and Walmart, have eased the mask mandates, small businesses are evaluating the policy.

At B Bistro in Miami the rule is, wear a mask until you’re seated.

“We feel it’s our responsibility to make our customers feel safe and that’s our top priority,” said Daniel Ruiz, director of operations at B Bistro.

Ruiz said there are no plans to change their current mask mandate anytime soon.

“Guests still aren’t comfortable despite the vaccines with being served without a mask. So until it fades out with time, we’ll be adjusting and adapting,” said Ruiz.

CDC officials announced the relaxation of mask requirements Thursday. CDC Director Rochelle Walensky said the decision to loosen mask guidelines comes as case are down and vaccines are proving effective in real-world scenarios.

“People have to be honest with themselves. You’re protected if you’re vaccinated. You’re not, if you’re not vaccinated,” said Walensky.

CDC officials said they still recommend masks in healthcare and transportation settings. As for how the public feels about CDC’s new guidance, it depends on who you ask.

“If you’re fully vaccinated, I don’t see a problem,” said Roger Marsh.

“How do employees know when you walk into the store that you’re fully vaccinated, how are you supposed to show proof, that’s the only thing I’m worries about,” said Keziah Cortez.

“I think it’s okay. I think we should be able to make our own decisions. A lot of people are getting vaccinated,” said Linnette.

Federal guidelines say that it’s up to private businesses whether they want to enforce their own mask policies.

Meanwhile as for local schools, Miami-Dade County public schools has made a decision about masks. Masks will be optional indoors and outdoors for next school year. Broward County hasn’t made a decision yet.