Costco is requiring everyone over the age of 2 in store to wear either a face mask or a face shield, even those with medical exemptions, KTLA sister station KRON in San Francisco reported.

Starting Nov. 16, people who were exempt from face masks due to having a medical condition will have to wear a face shield instead, Costco President and CEO Craig Jelinek announced Tuesday.

“This updated policy may seem inconvenient to some, however we believe the added safety is worth any inconvenience,” Jelinek said.

The Centers for Disease Control says face shields should not be used as a substitute for face masks. But for people who must wear a shield rather than a mask, the CDC recommends the following types:

  • Face shields that wrap around the sides of the wearer’s face and extend below the chin.
  • Hooded face shields.

Costco has required people at its locations to wear a face mask since May 4.. The CDC says people who identify with the following should not wear a mask:

  • Anyone who has trouble breathing
  • Anyone who is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance
  • Children younger than 2 years old

In accordance with CDC recommendations, children under the age of 2 do not have to wear a face covering inside Costco locations at all. The CDC also does not recommend face shields for newborns and infants.


By Arlene Huff

Arlene Huff is the founding member of Golden State Online. Before that She was a general assignment reporter. A native Californian, she graduated from the University of California with a degree in medical anthropology and global health. She currently lives in Los Angeles.

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