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Coronavirus

Bend Costco will require all members to wear face masks

New requirement goes into effect Monday

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Starting next Monday, Costco members and staff will be required to wear face masks before they can enter the Bend warehouse.

Requiring face masks is one of several steps the company has taken to ensure the health and safety of its staff and members.

Earlier this month, Costco announced they were only letting two people per membership card inside its warehouses.

They also changed their weekday closing hours to 6:30 p.m. and added extra opening hours from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays exclusively for members who are considered high-risk, including people 60 and older as well as those with disabilities.

Workers at the Bend Costco told NewsChannel 21 Tuesday starting next Monday, members will not be able to enter the warehouse without a face mask.

Pamela Sylvester, a Costco shopper, wore a mask to the store Tuesday. She said she thinks the new rule is a good idea.

“I think out of respect for others and everyone in our community that we should all be on the same page and be respectful with each other,” Sylvester said. “Whether you believe it or not, there’s more people on board with wearing masks while shopping than not.”

Bill Musser, who drove to Costco in Bend from La Pine to shop for groceries, said he also agrees with the new policy.

“I usually wear a mask when I go in there,” Musser said. “I’m considered high-risk, so I’m okay with that.” 

Some customers who did not agree with having to wear face masks in Costco did not want to be interviewed on camera. However, they said they would be willing to start wearing masks if it is a requirement to shop in the stores.

Costco’s corporate team said it was unable to provide comment about the new policies. In an email to NewsChannel 21 Tuesday, Costco said, “Our focus is to have merchandise available for our members at low warehouse prices.”

Learn more about Costco's response to COVID-19 on their website.

Bend / Central Oregon / Money / News / Top Stories
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Rhea Panela

Rhea Panela is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Rhea here.

Comments

50 Comments

  1. I called Costco this afternoon. I spoke with a rep. I called because with my disability I cannot wear a mask and wanted to know if I should being a note from my Doctor explaining that. First off I must say that she was very nice. We had a discussion about that with a favorable ending for me.(They have always been nice about accommodating my disability) But she went on to say that this new rule is not set in stone and may not happen. They would know by Monday before they open if they will actually go through with this. She mentioned that, since the announcement that masks were going to be required, she has been fielding calls all day with many people cancelling their memberships because they are upset about this. Feel free to call them and confirm any of what I have said.

      1. Most all of us have what is called and immune system.. it fights viruses and such. those that have compromised ones should stay home.. the masks don’t prevent you from catching it.. just giving germs to others maybe.

          1. It’s almost as if the experts were wrong telling us don’t bother with masks. But they are experts. We need to listen to them. Like when Fauci said Kung flu is not big deal.

      1. No they do not! Masks do not protect others if you have the virus because you carry it on your hands as well. They say the virus last three days on plastics. SO if you drink anything out of plastic bottles or buy anything that comes in plastic packaging and some with the virus has touched it you have been exposed.

        1. Well, guess what, I am not going up and giving out hugs to anyone wearing a mask….hence the social distancing. So the only other way you can catch the virus if you social distance is through airborne particles which many news outlets have talked about with breathing, sneezing, and coughing…..sooooo…..masked prevent that from happening!

        2. Uh, no,that is exactly what masks do. While they will help prevent giving a virus or germ, they most definitely 100% help prevent catching one too by preventing you from breathing in the airborne virus from others coughing or even exhaling.

      1. No they do not! Masks do not protect others if you have the virus because you carry it on your hands as well. They say the virus last three days on plastics. SO if you drink anything out of plastic bottles or buy anything that comes in plastic packaging and some with the virus has touched it you have been exposed.

      2. Correct. So its guilty until proven innocent. They just automatically assume everyone has it. Just like all the presumptive cases they have been counting.

  2. Hysterical! This a fake pandemic folks and more and more medical professionals are saying so and that the response to the “pandemic” is worse than the “pandemic” itself. Costco is garbage, cancel your membership.

    1. I posted a video from YouTube that was a briefing from two virologists with a combined 40+ years experience stating that this virus was no more than seasonal flu but it has since been removed by YouTube. Didn’t fit their policy. You know, their policy of deleting the truth!

      1. Two virologists stating opinions based on incomplete data. I’d like to see their findings peer-reviewed.
        Always so eager to jump on a bandwagon that suits your narrative.

        1. “Incomplete data” ?

          Their data clearly showed that California has a Wuhan virus fatality rate of 0.03

          The good doctors are questioning the lack of science behind their Governor’s decision to destroy their economy- it is the same question “enlightened” folks are asking out here in Oregon also.

          1. We are still in the midst of a pandemic. There is no solid data on mortality rates for SARS-CoV-2 because it’s constantly changing, and there won’t be solid data for years to come. It is dangerous to claim such low numbers and until there is peer-reviewed evidence that those numbers are correct, it is far from fact. You’re always eager to cry “FAKE NEWS” unless it suits your narrative, then you’ll eat it up without question. Shame.

    2. What is fake about so many people getting sick & dying?
      Hooray for Costco. I will shop there more, knowing that they are being safe.
      Glad that you are canceling your membership. One more unsafe idiot out of the way.

  3. I don’t care if they wear masks. But if they continue to wear rubber gloves I will not allow them to handle my merchandise. I will not buy food from restaurants if their employees wear them. Because in the least, I know that they’re not washing their hands.

    1. If they are wearing gloves at work- handling the cash register- they need to sanitize their gloves after each person. Simply keep the gloves on- and spray them directly with a disinfectant agent.

      Problem solved.

  4. Banrygetshiswish nailed this months ago- only to be criticized and verbally abused by the moderator and his peanut gallery here at Z21- who insisted that ‘masks” were “dangerous” !

    Now- aside from getting the “mask up” strategy right- I see that I nailed the “get granny outta the nursing home” warning also.

    Ron Desantos of Florida was all over the evening talk shows presenting his 1.8 fatality rate for state-wide nursing homes- a specific population that he targeted for “immediate” and focused protection against the virus… Kate Brown did the exact opposite. The failed Governor of Oregon instead went after the healthiest population (school kids) and completely ignoed the obvious threat at hand.

    And KTVZ enabled this malarkey !

    Sad days to be in the “news” business.

  5. Good, I think all stores should do this when we open back up, at least for awhile. It seems we have done a great job in CO, it doesn’t seem there are many cases and we should be pretty safe, but just wait until all the tourists bring it back here this summer, that’s scary to me!

    1. Of course. Lets just keep dragging it on. With you being scared and all, perhaps you should just make this a new personal lifestyle and keep wearing a mask forever, because we never know when someone will be sick, or some other new virus might pop up…
      As far as doing a great job in C.O, all of the restrictions and closures could very
      well have made a difference, but it’s also possible that C.O much like many other areas in
      the country just didn’t get hit that hard with it in the first place…

      1. The sooner you come to terms with the fact that our country will NEVER return to a pre-pandemic state, the better. This virus is highly transmissible and isn’t limited by political standing, geography, or climate. Even if a vaccine is created in an optimistic timespan (18-24 months), will people line up to receive it? The reason the flu kills so many is that people don’t get vaccinated!

        1. I know that things will never be exactly like they were before all of this started.
          That’s the problem when people are basically forced into a complete lifestyle change.
          If you do it long enough, it becomes the new norm for many people…
          Yes we know that the virus doesn’t discriminate socially or economically, but it’s
          also very likely that this virus just the same as others, doesn’t hit every area
          exactly the same…
          Yes there are a lot of people that die from the typical flu bug but many of those
          people also have preexisting underlying health issues, and it’s the same reason many who have died recently have been linked to this virus. Granted there have supposedly been some who were healthy and died after contracting the virus but they appear to be in the minority.
          I don’t think it has anything to do with the number of people that don’t get the flu
          vaccine, I think it is because the vaccine is ineffective so many times.

  6. I will defend their right to issue this requirement because they are a private business, different than my complaints about the government trying to force us. But while I will defend their right, I will also exercise my right to not go there till the requirement is lifted.

  7. I worked 25 years in an OR. Masks will not protect the person wearing it from any virus but they can help to prevent the spread to others. I also have noticed that many people are not wearing masks properly which mutes the point of wearing one. I agree whole heartedly that the virus is being spread by hand more than air. Please was your hands after handling anything and DON’T TOUCH YOUR FACE!!!

  8. If all it takes are masks open up everything. Where does one even buy a mask anyway? Especially one not made in China? If a store wants to require masks fine, don’t go there if you don’t want to wear one. What I find hilarious are the people blasting Trump and a people who enjoy their freedoms for not listening to the “science” and “ experts” when the same experts advising Trump, that the media love by the way, who were wrong over and over. No need to wear masks, remember that? Covid19 is no threat to Americans. Remember that? Go to China town and ride the subway. Remember that? Trumps Covid response is racist and xenophobic? Remember that.

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