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Walmart ends mask policy for fully vaccinated employees

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BENTONVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Walmart announced on February 11 it has ended its mask mandate for fully vaccinated employees and plans to end its daily health screenings and paid COVID-19 leave.

According to a news release from the company, fully vaccinated employees will not be required to wear masks at any Walmart or Sam’s Club facility effective immediately unless required by a state or local mandate or ordinance.

Walmart says it will continue to monitor the situation and advise of any changes.

The company considers fully vaccinated to be the full two-dose regimen of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or the single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Unvaccinated employees will be required to continue wearing masks until further notice, according to the release.

Masks will still be required for employees who work in clinical care settings with direct patient or customer contact, regardless of vaccination status.

Walmart also says it will no longer require daily health screenings as of February 28 except for employees in California, New York, and Virginia.

The company’s COVID-19 Emergency Leave Policy which provides paid leave for COVID-19-related absences in addition to its regular paid leave policies will also end on March 31 except as required by state or local mandates or ordinances.

Any COVID-19 leave in process on that date will continue under the terms of the current policy, according to the release.

Employees who are diagnosed with COVID-19 on or before March 31 may still apply for leave under the policy and, if eligible, the COVID-19 leave will be subject to the terms of the current policy.

For full-time hourly, salaried, and truck driver employees currently receiving short-term disability benefits due to COVID-19, their benefits will continue to be subject to the terms of those plans. The regular PTO options will remain in place.

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