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Las Vegas businesses react to updated CDC mask guidance

Posted at 12:23 PM, May 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-13 21:03:33-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — A major step towards getting back to normal. The Centers for Disease Control now says fully vaccinated people do not have to wear masks or social distance in most indoor places.

Still, some Las Vegas-area businesses say they’re keeping things the way they are.

“If you are fully vaccinated, you can start doing the things that you had stopped doing because of the pandemic,” said CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky on Thursday.

It’s a positive development for Nick Della Penna who owns the Great Greek Mediterranean Grill.

RELATED: CDC eases indoor mask requirements for fully vaccinated Americans

“It’s great to see us moving forward and great to see the country coming back,” he said. However, he’s not going to change his mask policy right away.

Della Penna is still requiring masks for both employees and customers unless they’re eating. It’s to avoid answering sensitive questions from customers.

“I can’t see us checking vaccination cards when they come in so they can take their mask off. It just doesn’t seem like the right thing to do,” Della Penna said.

Monica Pappas, the owner of Fingerprinting Express, is also sticking with the same policies, with all employees wearing masks and recommending customers do the same. She believes the guidance puts business owners in an awkward position.

RELATED: State of Nevada issues additional guidance after mask policy updated by Centers for Disease Control

“It’s also going to go to the honor system if people have been vaccinated and wearing a mask or not wearing a mask and that’s going to be interesting how that plays out,” she said.

State health officials say businesses are free to check vaccination cards, or not, as they are able to enforce their mask policy as they see fit.

Gov. Steve Sisolak’s mask mandate automatically aligns with whatever the updated CDC guidance is based on a directive he signed earlier this month.

Della Penna says he’s planning on playing it safe.

“We’re just going to continue to look and follow and listen to the professionals and the scientists and continue to make our decisions from there,” he said.

The CDC says there are some exceptions to their guidance. Everyone should still wear masks in certain crowded indoor places like on planes and in hospitals.