Walmart has lifted its requirement for vaccinated employees to wear a mask at work

Walmart has lifted its requirement for vaccinated employees to wear a mask at work
AP Photo/Jae C. Hong
  • Walmart has ended its policy requiring all employees to mask up, according to a company memo.
  • Vaccinated employees no longer have to wear face coverings, but they can choose to continue doing so.

Walmart has rolled back its companywide mask mandate for workers at its stores, according to a company memo released on Friday.

"Effective immediately, fully vaccinated associates will not be required to wear masks while working in any Walmart or Sam's Club facility, unless required by a state or local mandate or ordinance." the memo said.

The move by the largest private employer in the US — with a headcount of 1.6 million — came a day after a similar decision from Amazon regarding warehouse workers.

Unvaccinated employees and those working in clinical settings, like pharmacy, will continue to be required to mask up, the memo said, and vaccinated workers may to continue wearing masks if they so choose.

Some users on a Walmart employees' Reddit community expressed worry that wearing a mask would make them a target of anti-vaccine customers.


Others were more concerned with the end of two other emergency measures in the coming weeks: the daily health screen, and a special paid-leave for COVID-19 illness.

Beginning February 28, workers will not have to perform a health check before starting their shifts, except for stores in California, New York, and Virginia.

The special provision that provided additional paid time off for COVID-19-related absences will end on March 31 and revert to the standard leave-of-absence policy.