McDonald’s again requiring masks as Delta variant spreads

As the COVID-19 Delta variant spreads nationwide, McDonald’s workers and customers alike will have to wear masks again — regardless of their vaccination status — with the fast-food chain reinstating the policy at most of its more than 14,000 restaurants across the U.S.

The restaurant giant confirmed that it is reimposing the requirement following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention calling for masks inside public places in areas with high or substantial transmission of the coronavirus. Nearly 80% of U.S. counties currently fall into those categories, according to the CDC.

McDonald’s had dropped its mask requirement for fully vaccinated customers in May, while maintaining the mandate for unvaccinated patrons and workers. The company is among a slew of large employers revamping their vaccination and masking rules as the so-called Delta variant spurs a resurgence in COVID-19 cases across the U.S. 

Mask mandates return as COVID-19 cases rise 03:20

Many businesses such as Target and Walmart are now requiring employees to wear masks while encouraging or recommending face coverings for customers amid efforts to stem a pandemic that’s killed nearly 614,000 Americans. 

Dr. Anthony Fauci, chief medical adviser to President Joe Biden, said Sunday that Americans who remain unvaccinated against the coronavirus are “propagating” the latest outbreak of cases of the highly contagious Delta variant.

“We have 100 million people in this country … who are eligible to be vaccinated, who are not vaccinated,” Fauci said in an interview with “Face the Nation.” 

“We’ve really got to get those people to change their minds, make it easy for them, convince them, do something to get them to be vaccinated because they are the ones that are propagating this outbreak,” Fauci said.