Target Won't Require Masks in Illinois, Chicago Once Mandates Are Lifted

The change comes as both Illinois and Chicago prepare to lift their indoor mask mandates

Jeenah Moon | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Target has updated its company COVID policy to reflect that masks will no longer be required for employees or shoppers in areas where mandates aren't in place.

The COVID guidelines on the Minnesota-based retailer's website, which were updated Monday, now state that "as COVID-19 cases continue to decline across the country, Target will not require our U.S. team members or guests to wear masks, as local regulations allow."

"We’ll follow all state and local COVID-19 safety regulations and encourage our team members and guests to consult the latest public health guidance, get vaccinated and make decisions to keep themselves and their families safe," the website states.

Target confirmed to NBC News the masking change was put in place Monday.

"We'll also continue to provide our team with resources and benefits they need, including free medical-grade masks, COVID-19 tests, paid leave for team members with positive COVID-19 cases, and paid time and free Lyft rides to reduce barriers for team members to get their vaccines," the company said.

The change comes as both Illinois and Chicago prepare to lift their indoor mask mandates.

Starting next week, the mandate is expected to be lifted in many indoor spaces, though officials have stressed some businesses may choose to still require them.

Target notes on its website that many CVS Pharmacy locations, including some in Target stores, are distributing free N95 masks as part of a government program, while supplies last.

"Customers can request masks at the pharmacy counter and signs will be posted to indicate N95 mask availability," the guidance states.

In addition, the website states that it will continue to hold special hours for elderly or at-risk shoppers. The company will offer dedicated shopping every Tuesday for the first hour stores are open to "our most vulnerable guests."

The list includes those who are over 65 years old, pregnant women or those defined by the CDC as being as-risk for COVID-19.

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