Apple’s U.S. retail locations will no longer require vaccinated customers to wear masks inside the stores. As reported by Bloomberg, the move is a major shift in policy from last month.
The new change is expected to go into effect on Tuesday and stores will no longer require customers who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 to wear masks inside Apple Stores in the United States.
The Bloomberg report says Apple has informed retail leaders and staff of the change. Store employees will continue to wear masks.
The technology giant has begun informing retail employees of the impending change in impacted markets, according to people with knowledge of the matter, who declined to be identified discussing policy changes that haven’t been announced. The change will go into effect as early as Tuesday, and employees have been told that they won’t be required to ask customers for verification of vaccination.
Workers will still need to wear masks at stores, Apple told staff. The company could change its plans or delay the loosening of the restriction. The requirement for face coverings will also be dropped at some of the Cupertino, California-based company’s U.S. offices, according to a memo sent to corporate employees.
In an internal memo shared by Bloomberg, Apple says that it can now safely begin “moving to the next phase of resumption and will begin to operate under Phase 3 onsite protocol.” Phase 3 protocol, according to the memo, includes Apple protocol being updated to “permit optional masking for vaccinated individuals.” Physical distancing requirements are also being “relaxed.”