Few Orange County businesses ready to force customers to mask up

Before opening her door on Thursday morning Heather Boadella swapped out her "We highly recommend wearing masks while in the store" sign with a new one that reads "Masks required." 

It comes a day after Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings recommended that businesses require patrons and employees to wear face-coverings when indoors.  This follows guidance outlined by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for mask use while indoors for those living in areas of high risk for coronavirus transmission.

"It was a topic of our team meeting this morning,"  Boadella says. "In light of the recent CDC guidance and Mayor Demings' strong recommendation, we thought we definitely need to pivot to requiring masks again as of today."

While many Downtown Orlando business owners tell FOX 35 News it’s a tough decision, saying they don’t want to lose money, Boadella adds it wasn't a difficult decision for her business Artifact Candle Foundry. 

"For us, it was an easy decision to make at the end of the day we want our teammates safe, customers safe and we want to see our small business community to continue to be open and thrive," she explained.  

Her whole business is based on customer experience, making custom scented candles. That can’t happen if she has to close her doors again.  

"We're still recovering," Boadella said.

A few doors down at Paris Nail Salon, Montel Tran never took down his sign asking customers to wear a face mask. He says it has not affected his business.

"They are very polite about it. When they see the sign.  If they don't have a mask, they ask us for one. And they were very polite. They wear it. They cooperate, they understand, they don't make a scene about it," Tran said. 

One business owner told FOX 35 News that he has been requiring his employees to wear masks and will continue to do that. But, he’s not going to ask his customers to wear masks saying they’re adults and can make their own decisions. 

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