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Local businesses discuss whether to require masks as CDC reverses guidelines

Posted at 3:14 PM, Jul 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-29 22:17:34-04

GREEN BAY (NBC 26) — With the CDC reversing its mask guidelines for fully vaccinated individuals, local businesses are contemplating whether to begin requiring masks once again.

The CDC updated its mask guidelines Tuesday, recommending people who are vaccinated against COVID-19 wear masks indoors in parts of the U.S. where the virus is surging.

The new guidelines come as parts of the country are seeing COVID-19 cases climb due in large part to the rise in the more transmissible delta variant.

"Having to decide what will be the right thing to do as an owner has always been a challenge through this whole time of the pandemic," said Rosemary Sandoval, the owner of Salon Fifty Four in Green Bay. "Having to sit here and make a decision on this always puts us in an uncomfortable position."

Her salon lifted their mask requirement over two months ago when the CDC announced that vaccinated Americans no longer needed to wear face coverings indoors or outdoors. Since then, Sandoval has left the decision up to clients.

Now, she will have to decide whether to require masks again.

"I'm going to have to do a little bit more research and wait for more information and eventually we'll have to make decisions," Sandoval said.

Many local businesses are hoping for more guidance from the state and local government as they decide what to do. Besselli boutique also required masks up until the CDC lifted the recommendation for fully vaccinated individuals. Co-owner Megan Treml says that if need be, her boutique is ready to have to require them again.

"Our policy always was to wear a mask," Treml said. "We were just following the CDC recommendations and doing our part to keep everybody safe and we'll continue to do that if it comes down to that."

Aside from worrying about the rising number of COVID cases in the state, local businesses are also worried the new variant will lead to another shutdown.

"It's a concern as a business owner if we will face some shut down again with a new variant," Sandoval said.

"Obviously I worry. I worry about my parents, I worry about my kids," Treml said. "I think you'd be lying if you said you didn't worry."