No masks required for fully vaccinated people indoors starting Wednesday, Gov. says

Coronavirus

This story has been archived, and the latest details can be found here.

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — As the CDC declared last week that fully vaccinated people can ditch masks in most cases, more national chains and local businesses are dropping the mask requirements. Connecticut as a whole is going in a similar direction.

Following new CDC guidelines, Governor Ned Lamont says fully vaccinated people do not have to wear masks indoors starting Wednesday. Exceptions to that rule include schools, congregate care settings and public transit. Private businesses can implement their own policies on whether workers and customers need to work masks inside.

On Tuesday, Gov. Lamont signed an executive order aligning Connecticut’s mask and face-covering policy with the new recommendations from the CDC.

RELATED: CDC says schools should still implement face masks, social distancing through end of term

The varying policies are creating some confusion. Businesses are currently busy talking to their own staff and customers to determine what works for them.

Big box retailers like Walmart, Target, CVS and Starbucks all say fully vaccinated people can go maskless.

Locally, small businesses are taking a nuanced approach.

At Del Soul Spa in Newington, owner Katie Kiss is doing everything she can to maintain a relaxing but safe environment.

“We’re not requiring anyone that has been fully vaccinated to wear a mask in our space,” said Kiss, adding, “If a client comes in and wants a masked service we will be happy to oblige with that.”

Regular customer Christina says she’ll choose to stay masked, but feels safe as the salon relaxes restrictions.

“They’re protecting themselves and everyone who comes here so I feel very comfortable coming here,” said Christina.

At La Fortuna in Stratford, customers have long loved the handmade plexiglass dividers. Those will stay up for now, there will be individual menus again and servers will be fully vaccinated and masked. But vaccinated customers can decide for themselves how they feel most comfortable.

“For [fully vaccinated] customers, it’s their decision whether they want to wear masks based on CDC guidelines,” said Alex Gjeka of La Fortuna Bar & Restaurant.

So—How will businesses know if you’re fully vaccinated?

It will all be based on the honor system. You’ll have to decide for yourself if you have faith in your neighbor.

Fully vaxxed and catching a Yard Goats game? You can keep your mask off, but if you’re unvaccinated, you’re encouraged to wear one.

“We are suggesting folks, who are not vaccinated, do wear their masks,” said Mike Abramson, General Manager of the Hartford Yard Goats. “But, we’re not requiring it of everybody.”

Do you work or go to school at Quinnipiac University? Keep your masks on.

Going grocery shopping? Masks on at Stew Leonards, for now.

“At Stew’s, we’re going slow and just monitor it and make a decision based on day-to-day what customers are saying,” said Stew Leonard Jr. at the Governor’s daily press briefing.

So, how will businesses know if you’re fully vaccinated?

It will all be based on the honor system. You’ll have to decide for yourself if you have faith in your neighbor.

“There are things we still need to be cautious and cognitive of,” said Keith Grant, Senior System Director for Infection Prevention at Hartford HealthCare.

This new guidance isn’t one-size-fits-all. Health experts and doctors tell News 8 you might feel more comfortable easing into it. Keith Grant, Senior System Director for Infection Prevention at Hartford HealthCare, said there are situations where it will be best to mask up and return to those safety measures we’ve grown accustomed to.

“If you have individuals around you that are high risk, with chronic lung disease or advanced age, be wary of that, be cautious, and be responsible,” explained Grant.

RELATED: Even with CDC guidance, not everyone is comfortable taking off their mask

Click here to see the latest details on reopening Connecticut as we continue to recover from the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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