Mask or no mask? El Paso businesses on new CDC face mask guidance

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EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — When walking into Lloyd’s Pub in West El Paso, a sign can be seen on the door that says masks are not required.

“We told the bartenders just mirror what the customers are doing. We had very few people come in with a mask,” said Sylvia Colbert, owner of Lloyd’s Pub.

Colbert said masks have been optional at her business ever since Gov. Greg Abbott lifted the mask mandate in Texas.

“The sign on the door says masks are optional. Of course, if you feel more comfortable wearing one, by all means, wear one. You should wear one especially if you haven’t been vaccinated,” she said.

Colbert expects more customers to opt against wearing a mask now that the CDC announced on Thursday that fully vaccinated people can go most places indoors and outdoors without masks. However, Colbert said she will not ask people about being vaccinated.

“If they’re willing to put their life at risk by not taking the steps to be precautionary about this, then that’s on them,” said Colbert.

Other businesses are still deciding what they will do moving forward under the new guidance from the CDC.

Walgreens, located on the corner of Sunland Park and Mesa, has a sign posted that says masks are required. Walgreens sent us this statement.

We have decided to keep our current face-covering policy in place for the time being. The safety of our team members and customers is our top priority and will continue to guide our decision process.

That’s something customers say they are fine with.

“I’m wearing my mask because, even though I’m fully vaccinated, we don’t know who is not vaccinated,” said Guadalupe Carbajal.

“If you feel comfortable not wearing your mask in certain areas, then maybe you shouldn’t. But on the other hand, I’m going to wear mine if I go into a store and there’s a lot of people, a lot of action.”

The El Paso City and County Health Authority Dr. Hector Ocaranza said it’s up to individual businesses on whether or not they will require face masks, but says the City of El Paso recommends everyone continue wearing face coverings until more people are vaccinated.

“As the CDC is easing the restrictions and having new recommendations in regards to the face coverings and the face masks, those recommendations are for people that are fully immunized and, therefore, are outdoors or for places that are indoors where are the people are fully immunized. For the City of El Paso, we continue to recommend wearing the face-covering,” said Ocaranza during a press conference on Thursday.

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