How can retailers help reinforce mask wearing in their stores while keeping their employees safe?

If a customer refuses to wear a mask, depending on jurisdiction, you may be obligated to point them to alternative options such as curbside pick-up and/or delivery rather than allowing them into the store without a mask. Please refer to RCC’s Mask Requirements by Region page for more information.

  • Clearly communicate the need to wear a mask in store via all means including your website, social media and in-store signage. 
  • Indicate how your business can accommodate customers who cannot wear a mask (e.g. curbside pick-up).
  • Have a policy prepared in the event of an escalated situation so that staff know how to handle the situation.
  • Politely ask the customer to reconsider wearing a mask if they are refusing to do so. 
  • Retailers should be mindful that there may not be a viable legal defence to protect them in the event of a physical altercation (e.g. a defence of necessity or avoidance of greater harm).   
  • If a physical altercation ensues, law enforcement should be called immediately. View CDC US guidance on how to deal with ‘anti-mask’ customers: Limiting workplace violence associated with COVID-19

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