New mask mandates begin at several Central Florida stores

Governor says he doesn't want statewide mask requirement

ORLANDO, Fla. – Several companies are beginning to implement new rules requiring customers to wear face coverings while shopping.

A mandatory face mask policy went into effect Monday at Walmart, Sam’s Club, CVS, Lowe’s and Kohl’s locations across the country.

In Clermont, signs about the new rule were set up at the entrance to Walmart on Johns Lake Road. Workers were also on hand to remind shoppers who were not aware of the change in policy.

Most customers understood and appreciated the new rule.

“I think it’s good for the public, but also good for the employees to have to work, because of their jobs. They’re at risk for exposure, too,” Freddie Melvin said.

While the list of national chains requiring face masks is growing, debate has continued about the possibility of a mask mandate in Florida.

Despite a surge in positive coronavirus cases in recent weeks, Gov. Ron DeSantis said on Sunday that he doesn't have plans to issue a statewide requirement.

"We're doing an advisory. We're not going to be prosecuting people," DeSantis said.

Other retailers that will soon require face masks include Publix beginning on Tuesday and Home Depot beginning on Wednesday.

Target has also issued a mandatory face mask police that will go into effect Aug. 1.

About the Author:

Mark Lehman became a News 6 reporter in July 2014, but he's been a Central Florida journalist and part of the News 6 team for much longer. While most people are fast asleep in their bed, Mark starts his day overnight by searching for news on the streets of Central Florida.