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Horgan says those refusing to follow mandatory mask order should 'grow up'

Last Updated Nov 26, 2020 at 11:17 pm PST

FILE - Packages of face masks. (CITYNEWS/Tony Fera)
Summary

Premier John Horgan said the aggressive treatment of workers in stores and restaurants needs to stop

A fine of up to $230 can be levied for those defying the mask order

VICTORIA (NEWS 1130) — In the week since masks became mandatory inside B.C. businesses employees have been confronted by “belligerent” customers, and Premier John Horgan has a message for those people — “grow up.”

Speaking after he and his cabinet were sworn in Thursday, Horgan said the aggressive treatment of workers in stores and restaurants needs to stop.

“They are not there to be public health officers, they’re there to serve food and to meet the needs of their customers, and similarly in the retail sector, if people are belligerent I believe that is where the mask mandate and enforcement is imperative. It’s not acceptable to be belligerent about putting on a mask to protect other people,” he said.

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“Don’t be stupid about it, put it on, go buy your groceries, take it off when you get to your car, and get on with your life. It is not a reason to get overwrought. There’s lots of things in this world to be despondent about, to be angry at — putting on a mask should not be one of them.”

The mask mandate does have an exception for those who can not wear a mask for medical reasons.

“Belligerent people should grow up. Those that have legitimate reasons they’re not able to wear a mask, we’ll be working through those issues with Dr. Henry and others to confirm what legitimate reasons to not put a mask on are, and we’ll deal with that in the days ahead,” he added.

A fine of up to $230 can be levied for those defying the mask order, and Horgan hinted stronger enforcement measures could be coming for repeat offenders and others caught abusing workers.