People wearing masks and gloves wait to enter a Walmart on April 17, 2020 in Uniondale, New York.
Walmart and Sam’s Club will require their approximately 1.5 million U.S.-based associates to wear masks or other face coverings beginning on Monday, according to a memo sent by the CEOs of Walmart U.S. and Sam’s Club, a Walmart division.
The retailers will also encourage customers to wear face coverings, according to the memo, which is dated Friday. Walmart is the largest private employer in the United States.
The memo was sent by John Furner of Walmart and Kath McLay of Sam’s Club to associates in the United States, and comes as an increasing number of states and cities, including New York, are mandating that residents wear masks in public settings.
On the federal level, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said this month that it also recommends that Americans wear cloth face coverings in places where social distancing is difficult, including grocery stores.