HONOLULU (KHON2) — Starting Monday, Foodland will require its employees to wear a mask on the job.
A spokesperson for the grocery store chain said the decision was made when the CDC placed Oahu, Kauai and Maui counties in the “Red Zone”, meaning COVID transmission is high.
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Part of a statement from Foodland said:
“For high-risk areas with “red” status, the CDC recommends mask wearing for residents when indoors in public places. Given the CDC’s recommendations, we believe taking this action now is important to ensure the safety of our employees.”
As for customers, the store will encourage them to wear a mask but it will not be required.
Meanwhile, the Waikiki Aquarium recently started requiring visitors to wear a mask inside the facility.
Chanel Akaka from Wahiawa said she appreciates the return of the mask policy.
Akaka said, “I like it makes me feel safer, my kids, too. Everywhere we go we wear masks anyway so I like that they are enforcing it here.”
The Waikiki Aquarium said it is following the advice from public health experts as COVID cases in the state have gone up.
The state’s epidemic curve chart shows a slight increase in COVID cases for the month of May, with daily coronavirus cases averaging more than 900.
Although public health officials believe that number could be higher due to unreported at-home COVID-19 tests.
But some residents like Karina Case said they are ready to leave pandemic protocols in the past, including masks.
“I wasn’t too happy to see that honestly, actually surprised as well because everywhere else it seems except for schools and hospitals we’re not required to wear masks so slightly disappointed,” Case said. “I am ready for it to be over for sure.”
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The University of Hawaii campuses announced masks will continue to be required inside classrooms through the summer session. The university has not decided if that requirement will remain in place for the fall.