The Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updated recommendations for mask-wearing due to the Delta Variant of COVID-19 were recently announced, and the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) said last week that they're fully adopting those recommendations.

The IDPH is also following the CDC's recommendations for K-12 schools, which would require universal masking indoors among teachers, staff, students and/or visitors to schools, whether you've been vaccinated or not.

Agree or not, at least those guidelines seem fairly clear and easy to understand. But what about retail shopping? There's really no one-size-fits-all template that retailers are following, which can lead to some confusion amongst the Illinois shopping public.

I did some serious looking to find the information about mask policies being put into place once again by major retailers here in Illinois. Most of these companies have locations throughout the country, but for local Rockford-owned businesses your best bet is to give them a call or check their website/Facebook page before heading over.

Thanks, and a hat-tip to AARP,, MarketWatch, and FoxBusiness for the help on this list:

  • Walmart: Employees must be masked, customers are encouraged, but not mandated to do the same.
  • ALDI: Face coverings are required for unvaccinated customers and employees, and optional for vaccinated customers.
  • Kroger: Face coverings are mandated for some employees, and are strongly suggested for customers, whether vaxxed or not.
  • Bed, Bath & Beyond: A mask mandate remains in place for shoppers and employees but exempts fully vaccinated customers "in U.S. locations where permitted by local order or law."
  • Costco: Costco says that they will be following the face-covering mandates of "the applicable state and local jurisdictions."
  • Kohl's: Kohl's requires all employees in counties with a substantial or high risk of transmission to wear masks while in store. The company has also requested that customers in these areas wear masks.
  • Home Depot: They say that associates, contractors, and vendors will be required to wear face coverings, while customers will be asked to wear one.

Click here, or here for a complete list of Illinois major retailers and their updated requirements.

READ ON: See the States Where People Live the Longest

Stacker used data from the 2020 County Health Rankings to rank every state's average life expectancy from lowest to highest. The 2020 County Health Rankings values were calculated using mortality counts from the 2016-2018 National Center for Health Statistics. The U.S. Census 2019 American Community Survey and America's Health Rankings Senior Report 2019 data were also used to provide demographics on the senior population of each state and the state's rank on senior health care, respectively.

Read on to learn the average life expectancy in each state.

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