HOMEWOOD, Ala. (WIAT) — Alabama’s statewide mask mandate expires Friday, and many business owners are deciding whether to implement their own.
At Alabama Goods, staff are taking a middle-ground approach. Co-owner Sherry Hartley said they will put a sign on their door asking customers to wear masks, but those who choose not to wear a mask will not be asked to put one on.
“We know that we’re going to have customers that maybe they’ve been vaccinated or for whatever reason they do not want to wear a mask,” Hartley said. “And because the mandate has been removed, we won’t require it.”
Staff, however, will wear continue to wear masks, and Hartley said almost all of them have either already been vaccinated or are scheduled to receive shots.
“There’s still a reason to be concerned,” she said. “So we’re going to continue to be cautious in the way that we interact with our customers.”
Hartley said management spoke with staff and customers about the safety strategy, and they seemed to be okay with it. But the strategy could change as conditions related to the pandemic change.
“Once the new variant is no longer aggressive as it is now, and once we feel like our customers would be safe, once more people are vaccinated, then yes, we’ll remove the signage,” she said.
Hartley likes how the future looks for her business. As more people get vaccinated, she believes people will get out more and more, and that will improve business.