The newly introduced COVID-19 vaccines are making their way throughout the U.S., and President Joseph R. Biden unveiled a plan mid-January to jump-start the nation’s faltering COVID-19 vaccine effort that will include establishing mass vaccination sites and mobile vaccine clinics around the country. While this is good news, COVID numbers continue to climb.
Most states have updated pandemic information right on their website, and Independent Retailer also has them summed up for you. This list is constantly being updated to make it easier for retailers to comply with their state and know what is going on. Businesses can also visit www.nrf.com/coronavirus-retail-restrictions-state for more information on the restrictions.
Alabama – UPDATED
Governor Kay Ivey issued her twentieth supplemental emergency proclamation extending the Safer at Home Order that includes a statewide mask requirement. Individuals will be required to wear a mask or other facial covering when in public and in close contact with other people, as described in the order.
For more information, visit covid19.alabama.gov.
Certain businesses previously closed may reopen subject to restrictions set forth in the Reopen Alaska Responsibly Plan, which can be found on the state’s website. If business cannot follow restrictions, they must remain closed pursuant to previous health mandates.
For more information, visit covid19.alaska.gov/reopen.
Arizona – UPDATED
Face coverings are recommended for residents when in public places. All businesses must develop, establish, and implement policies to limit and prevent the spread of COVID-19, including providing necessary protective equipment.
For more information, visit azgovernor.gov/governor/reopening-guidance.
Face coverings are required for certain businesses reopening. See industry specific Arkansas Department of Health Directives for more specific guidance. Employees at all businesses should wear a face covering to diminish potential spread, especially when maintaining a physical distance of six feet is not possible.
For more information, visit www.healthy.arkansas.gov/programs-services/topics/novel-coronavirus.
There are a total of 58 different counties in California, all with their own regulations. The details for each county can be found on the California government’s website. Once a county appears on the County Monitoring List for three consecutive days, indoor operations in the sectors listed in Section 3 of the July 13th State Health Officer Order must close.
For more information, visit covid19.ca.gov.
Amended order authorizes employers and business owners to deny admittance or service or require the removal of anyone not wearing a face covering. Employers must provide face coverings and gloves, as necessary. The counties in Colorado also have separate regulations for wearing masks.
For more information, visit covid.colorado.gov.
Connecticut – UPDATED
Due to the increasing rate of COVID-19 in Connecticut, Governor Lamont has ordered the entire state to roll back to Phase 2.1 rules. Facemasks need to be worn in public at all times, and businesses need to limit indoor capacity to 50% and implement strict cleaning protocols.
For more information, visit portal.ct.gov/coronavirus.
All individuals must wear a face covering. Businesses must provide face coverings as well as hand sanitizer for their employees. If a customer refuses to wear a mask, all businesses must deny entry to them.
For more information, visit coronavirus.delaware.gov.
District of Columbia
Individuals over the age of 9 must wear masks or face coverings when engaging in: essential and minimum basic operations of a business when persons are in the presence of others and essential travel if social distance cannot be maintained. Businesses must provide employees with face masks and post signage around the store, enforcing everyone to wear masks and maintain social distancing.
For more information, visit coronavirus.dc.gov.
There are 67 counties in Florida, each with their own regulations, so be sure to check their website for your specific county’s regulations. All persons providing essential services shall wear a face covering during in-person interactions with the public. Members of the public must use a face covering, unless they are under the age of two or someone who has difficulty breathing.
For more information, visit floridahealthcovid19.gov/businesses.
Georgia – UPDATED
Georgians are strongly encouraged to wear masks, observe social distancing, and regularly wash and sanitize their hands. Businesses are encouraged to commit to the Georgia Safety Promise to help instill consumer confidence and empower businesses by taking critical steps to help protect each other during COVID-19, and keep Georgia open for business.
For more information, visit georgia.gov/covid-19-coronavirus-georgia.
All customers must wear a face covering while waiting to enter and while at a business. All employees who have any contact with customers or goods to be purchased by customers must wear cloth face coverings compliant with CDC recommendations while at work.
For more information, visit governor.hawaii.gov/covid-19.
Residents should wear face coverings while in public, especially when six-foot distancing is not always possible. Employers should identify how masks, face coverings, and gloves may be required by employees depending on the county, as well as maintain social distancing in enclosed areas.
For more information, visit www.labor.idaho.gov/dnn/COVID-19.
Phase 3 executive order requires continued use of face coverings when in a public place and unable to maintain a six-foot distance. Face coverings are required in public indoor spaces such as stores. Retail stores must provide face coverings to all employees who are not able to maintain a six foot social distance at all times.
For more information, visit dph.illinois.gov/covid19/governor-pritzkers-executive-orders-and-rules.
Indiana – UPDATED
Face coverings are required for all residents. Businesses that are open to the public must follow county metric guidelines and are required to place clearly visible signage at their public and employee entrances notifying all that face coverings are required. Businesses should only admit only those who wear face coverings and practice social distancing.
For more information, visit www.coronavirus.in.gov.
Cloth face coverings are recommended and everyone is encouraged to social distance while outside of their homes.
For more information, visit coronavirus.iowa.gov/pages/guidance.
Individuals are strongly encouraged to wear cloth masks in public settings and especially when using mass transit. Employees should follow industry-specific guidance on mask use in workplaces.
For more information, visit covid.ks.gov.
Kentucky – UPDATED
Kentucky is in the reopening Phase 2. Businesses must ensure that employees must wear a cloth mask and gloves with jobs including touching items often touched by others. Businesses shall provide PPE at no cost to employees, and offer instruction on proper use of PPE. Customers should be encouraged to wear masks.
For more information, visit governor.ky.gov/covid19.
Due to rising COVID-19 and hospitalizations, Louisiana has stepped back into Phase 2. All businesses shall require that any owner or employee interacting or making contact with the public shall wear a face covering. Retailers must operate at 50% capacity.
For more information, visit coronavirus.la.gov.
Cloth face coverings must be worn at large gatherings, even those outside. Businesses accessible to the public shall post readily visible signs notifying customers of the requirement to wear cloth face coverings and must deny entry/service to any person not wearing a face covering.
For more information, visit www.maine.gov/covid19.
Maryland – UPDATED
The use of face coverings continues to be required for all people in Maryland over the age of five in public places and elsewhere across the state. Capacity at retail establishments should be reduced to 50%. It is critical that businesses follow social distancing guidelines and effective cleaning and disinfection.
For more information, visit coronavirus.maryland.gov/pages/business-resources.
Everyone is required to wear a face covering — including in a business, outdoors, or on public transportation — if they’re unable to socially distance. Medical-grade masks are strongly discouraged.
For more information, visit www.mass.gov/info-details/covid-19-updates-and-information#regulations-&-guidance-.
Michigan – UPDATED
All residents must wear a face covering over the nose and mouth, even when in any enclosed public space unless the individual is unable to medically tolerate a face covering. Employers must require face coverings to be worn when employees cannot consistently maintain six feet of separation from other individuals in the workplace, and consider face shields when employees cannot consistently maintain three feet of separation from other individuals in the workplace. Employers must provide non-medical grade face coverings to their employees.
For more information, visit www.michigan.gov/Coronavirus.
Minnesota – UPDATED
All residents are required to wear a face covering in all indoor businesses and public indoor spaces, unless alone. All businesses must implement a Preparedness Plan, limit on-premises capacity to 50 people, require workers to wear masks, and encourage customers to do so.
For more information, visit mn.gov/covid19/business-orgs/resources/index.jsp.
All employees must wear appropriate PPE based on their duties and responsibilities and in adherence with local guidelines/regulations. Every employee who comes into direct contact with customers shall be provided a face mask and shall be required to wear the face covering while on duty.
For more information, visit governorreeves.ms.gov/covid-19.
State guidelines for reopening include recommendation that employers implement basic infection prevention measures like use of protective equipment.
For more information, visit dss.mo.gov/covid-19.
The Governor encourages residents of Montana to wear cloth masks or face coverings in public. Employers should develop and implement appropriate policies for social distancing and protective equipment, temperature checks and/or symptom screening, sanitation, and use and disinfection of high-traffic areas.
For more information, visit covid19.mt.gov.
Residents are recommended to wear cloth masks in public where they cannot maintain 6 feet of social distance.
For more information, visit dhhs.ne.gov/pages/Coronavirus.aspx.
Nevada – UPDATED
All employers must require employees who interact with the public to wear face coverings and, to the maximum extent possible, encourage customers to wear face masks.
For more information, visit www.nvhealthresponse.nv.gov/info/business.
Face coverings are required when indoors and in public or shared areas, even when others are not around. Under Universal Guidelines for Businesses in EO 40, all employees should wear a cloth face covering while at work and in public.
For more information, visit www.nh.gov/covid19/resources-guidance/businesses.htm.
All businesses must require employees and customers to remain at least 6 feet apart, require everyone to wear face masks, provide face masks for employees, provide approved sanitization materials to employees and visitors, routinely clean and disinfect all high-touch areas, conduct daily health checks, and not allow sick employees to enter the workplace.
For more information, visit faq.business.nj.gov/en/collections/2198378-information-for-nj-businesses-on-the-coronavirus-outbreak.
Everyone in public places is required to wear masks. Employers must provide employees with face coverings and require their use in the workplace.
For more information, visit www.newmexico.gov/latest-updates.
New York – UPDATED
The Governor requires all individuals over the age of two to wear a mask or cloth face-covering when in a public place and unable to maintain a six-foot distance from others. Businesses are encouraged to deny entry to anyone not wearing a face covering who is over the age of 2 and medically able to tolerate a covering. Essential employees must wear face coverings when in direct contact with customers or the public. Employers must provide masks to employees.
For more information, visit www1.nyc.gov/site/coronavirus/businesses/businesses-and-nonprofits.page.
North Carolina – UPDATED
Face coverings are required when leaving the home and inside all public settings. It is recommended that businesses advise employees to wear cloth face coverings and provide workers with face masks. Retail business locations with more than 15,000 square feet of interior space must have a worker at each public entrance open to the public to enforce face covering requirements.
For more information, visit www.nc.gov/covid19.
North Dakota – UPDATED
Employees and the public should wear face coverings especially in settings where social distancing may be difficult to maintain. Employers should encourage use of cloth face coverings to employees whose duties require close contact with other employees and/or the public.
For more information, visit www.health.nd.gov/diseases-conditions/coronavirus.
Ohio – UPDATED
Governor and Lt. Governor urges Ohioans to begin wearing cloth masks while in public in accordance with recommendations from the CDC. Businesses must require all employees to wear facial coverings (with limited exceptions for health, safety, working alone, or functional/practical reasons not to) — and must allow customers to do so.
For more information, visit coronavirus.ohio.gov/wps/portal/gov/covid-19/home.
Employers are to encourage employees to wear face masks unless they are in a separated workstation or office. Employees who come in contact with the public are encouraged to wear gloves and a mask.
For more information, visit oklahoma.gov/covid19.html.
The Governor recommends that individuals wear cloth masks when in public. Under Mask and Face Covering Guidance for Businesses, retailers must require employees to wear masks. Employers must develop and comply with policies and procedures that provide for accommodations and exemptions from the mask or face covering requirement. These businesses may require customers and visitors to wear face coverings.
For more information, visit coronavirus.oregon.gov/.
Retailers must provide masks for employees to wear during their time at work and make it a mandatory requirement to wear masks while on the work site, except during breaks. Retailers must require all customers to wear masks while on the premises and deny entry to those not wearing masks. Businesses must operate at 50% capacity.
For more information, visit www.governor.pa.gov/covid-19.
Everyone is encouraged to wear face masks outside of their houses, maintain at least six feet of distance, and practice regular hygiene and washing their hands.
For more information, visit www.salud.gov.pr/Pages/coronavirus.aspx.
All persons are required to wear a mask or cloth face covering at all times when inside grocery stores, pharmacies, or retail stores.
For more information, visit health.ri.gov/covid.
Reopening guidance for businesses encourages employees to wear masks or cloth face coverings, especially in settings where social distancing is not feasible. Cloth face coverings should be optional for employees with underlying respiratory illness, but if not worn, social distancing must be performed.
For more information, visit scdhec.gov/infectious-diseases/viruses/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19.
It is recommended that everyone wear a cloth face cover when they go out in public.
For more information, visit covid.sd.gov.
Individuals are urged to wear face coverings in public places.
For more information, visit www.tn.gov/governor/covid-19.html.
Texas – UPDATED
Retailers may operate up to 75% capacity. All employees and customers must wear a face covering wherever it is not feasible to maintain six feet of social distancing from another individual.
For more information, visit dshs.texas.gov/coronavirus.
Utah – UPDATED
Masks are required for employees of businesses when individuals are unable to socially distance. Otherwise, masks are strongly recommended. Businesses shall post signage indicating that patrons are expected to wear masks.
For more information, visit coronavirus.utah.gov.
Businesses that are operating must implement certain physical distancing, health and sanitation measures. Employees must wear face coverings over their nose and mouth when in the presence of others. In the case of retail cashiers, a translucent shield of sneeze guard is acceptable in lieu of a mask. Businesses may require customers or clients to wear masks.
For more information, visit www.healthvermont.gov/response/coronavirus-covid-19.
Virginia – UPDATED
All businesses must implement appropriate social distancing guidelines along with the proper signage, practice routine cleaning and disinfection, and require both employees and customers to wear face coverings.
For more information, visit www.virginia.gov/coronavirus.
Retail establishments must limit occupancy to 25%. Businesses must also arrange contactless pay options, pickup, and/or delivery of goods wherever possible, place signs around the store for safe customer flow, frequently sanitize high-touch areas, provide PPE supplies to workers, ensure all employees are wearing face masks, screen employees for symptoms of COVID-19 at the start of their shift, and encourage customers to wear face masks.
For more information, visit coronavirus.wa.gov.
Individuals over the age of 9, except for those who have trouble breathing, must wear face masks in public. All businesses must post signs and ensure requirements are being followed.
For more information, visit dhhr.wv.gov/COVID-19/Pages/default.aspx.
Individuals are strongly advised to use cloth face coverings while in public, and particularly when using mass transit. Workers who have frequent, close contact with customers or other workers may need to wear some combination of a face mask, a face shield and/or goggles.
For more information, visit www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/covid-19/index.htm.
Under reopening order, employees are required to wear face coverings when they may come within six feet of other employees or customers.
For more information, visit covid19.wyo.gov.
Just like the United States, Canada’s provinces have their own regulations regarding COVID-19 and have travel restrictions from one province to another. Information for each province can be found on the Government of Canada’s website, but they encourage all residents to social distance, stay home if they’re ill, wear a face mask, and practice good hygiene.
For more information, visit www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/guidance-documents.html.