South Okanagan gift shop says mask-wearing ‘prohibited’ in store | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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South Okanagan gift shop says mask-wearing ‘prohibited’ in store

A mask prohibited sign shown at the One Eyed Budgie Gift Shop.
Image Credit: SUBMITTED
November 07, 2020 - 12:00 PM

Despite Canada’s chief public health officer Dr. Theresa Tam recommending non-medical mask-wearing indoors, a South Okanagan gift shop has put up a sign stating that mask-wearing is prohibited at its establishment.

David Shearer, co-owner of The One Eyed Budgie Gift Shop located on the Crowsnest Highway in Keremeos, believes that masks can produce irreversible health effects and says the evidence of that can be found at the Ferdinand Gallery's "Truth Centre."

A sign posted on the front of the door reads “mask-wearing is prohibited in this establishment.”

However, B.C.’s provincial health officer has recommended mask-wearing indoors, which can reduce the spread of COVID-19. Canada’s top doctor has also recommended mask use, as droplets that spread the virus can be contained and even came out with new recommendations for masks that have three layers of protection earlier this week.

READ MORE: Third layer's the charm: Top doctor unveils new face mask recommendations

Many businesses and municipalities have also mandated mask use while indoors, where social distancing is not possible in tighter enclosed spaces.

“Wearing non-medical masks is appropriate when physical distancing cannot be maintained,"  Interior Health Medical Health Officer Dr. Silvina Mema said in a previous interview with iNFOnews. "Non-medical masks can protect others by keeping droplets close to the person wearing the mask.”

Shearer said they won’t turn away those who wear masks in the store as it's the customers' choice. The sign has been posted in the gift shop’s window for the last month.

“Truth is not imposing, it sits back quietly if anybody should want to understand or avail themselves to it,” he said.

Interior Health has said in a statement it hopes the public will rely on trusted and accurate public health information from health authorities, such as that provided regularly by Dr. Bonnie Henry, Interior Health medical health officers and the B.C. Centre for Disease Control.

All employers are required to have a WorkSafeBC health and safety plan in place to mitigate the risk of transmission of COVID-19 to workers, and this plan must be available at request, but WorkSafe doesn't prescribe measures like wearing a mask, according to an email send from media relations officer Alexandra Skinner.


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