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Vaccinated shoppers still not ready to take off the mask at Kroger

Published: May. 20, 2021 at 10:03 PM EDT
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Although the requirement has been lifted, Debra Walton said she plans to continue to wear a...
Although the requirement has been lifted, Debra Walton said she plans to continue to wear a mask while shopping at Kroger for her own safety.(Source: Michael Williams, WAVE 3 News)
Kroger shoppers Rebecca (left) and Erin Moore.
Kroger shoppers Rebecca (left) and Erin Moore.(Source: Michael Williams, WAVE 3 News)
Kroger shopper Paul Huffman said he loves no longer having to wear a mask while inside the store.
Kroger shopper Paul Huffman said he loves no longer having to wear a mask while inside the store.(Source: Michael Williams, WAVE 3 News)
May 20, 2021 was the first day vaccinated customers could shop at Kroger without a mask. The...
May 20, 2021 was the first day vaccinated customers could shop at Kroger without a mask. The retailer changed its mask requirements at stores around the country.(Source: Michael Williams, WAVE 3 News)

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) – This was the first day vaccinated customers could shop at Kroger without a mask. The retailer changed its mask requirements at stores around the country. In Louisville, vaccinated customers reacted with caution.

“I plan to wear a mask indefinitely,” shopper Debra Walton said, “just because I don’t know what my friends are doing around me.”

Customers who are not vaccinated are being asked to continue wearing a mask and people are on the honor system.

“There’s no way of telling,” shopper Erin Moore said. “You’ve just got a hope the people who are not wearing their masks have been vaccinated.”

In a press release earlier in the week, the grocery chain stated, “Based on the CDC’s science-based guidance and the input of our associates, we are updating our mask policy in a way that balances our values of safety and respect.”

United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) President Marc Perrone expressed doubts about the change.

“Before the new CDC mask guidance,” Perrone said in a statement, “we knew that unmasked shoppers were ignoring COVID safety measures and likely unvaccinated, so we knew to keep our distance if we were concerned. Now it is virtually impossible to tell who is and is not vaccinated.”

For some however, like shopper Paul Huffman, it was still a moment of relief.

“I love it,” he said.

WAVE 3 News Now. Watch Anytime. Anywhere.
WAVE 3 News Now. Watch Anytime. Anywhere.(WAVE 3 News)

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