Mecklenburg County, Businesses Leaders Consider Making Face Masks Required in Stores

CHARLOTTE, NC – Mecklenburg county leaders pushing for retail workers and customers to wear masks when inside of stores at all times. 

“No mask no service,” said Dena Diorio, the Mecklenburg County Manager, “we couldn’t certainly mandate it, but having a policy for businesses saying that if you don’t wear a mask, we’re not going to serve you might be a way to encourage people to put face coverings on when they leave their home.”

Diorio, speaking about ways to ensure people wear protective gear while going back to work and shopping. 

County staff, with the help of business owners, put together a tool kit that included signs that say “No Entry Without Face Mask.”

“That’s really a recommendation, not a mandate,” said Diorio.

Rocio Gonzalez, the executive director of the Latin American Chamber is supportive of the idea, but says she would like to see more training and awareness for businesses and the public, after spending time out shopping this weekend. 

“It was very worrisome how relaxed everybody is outside,” said Gonzalez

Some business leaders say they worry requiring masks could drive away customers that they’re desperate to get. Some wondered if the move would also create legal issues. 

“I think it’s uncharted territory, but we can certainly go back and see what the legal implications of that are going to be,” said Diorio. 

The business roundtable will meet again next week to discuss phase two of the reopen plan.  In phase two, close contact businesses like hair and nail salons and fitness centers could reopen.