Some Saskatoon business owners pleased they'll soon have control over masking requirements
After months of instructions from the province regarding public health guidelines, businesses will soon be in the driver's seat.
On Sunday restaurants, stores and other businesses can choose to remove the mandatory mask mandate.
“It should be left up to business because not all businesses are the same nature,” said the owner of Techedge Tauseeq Aziz.
“We have shoplifting at a higher rate in this so there were points where we did not want to have masks on our customers," the owner of the Riversdale business said.
Aziz said he'll still ask his staff to mask up because there is no way to tell if a customer is fully vaccinated or not.
The Government of Saskatchewan released new guidance for mask use and other safety measures under Step Three of the Reopening Roadmap, which will remove all public health orders on July 11.
“After 485 days of the government telling you how to live your life, all of those restrictions will end,” Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe said Wednesday.
Mask use will no longer be required in indoor spaces, but the province said masking will remain an option for all residents. Individual businesses and facilities will be allowed to implement their own masking policies.
"If you enter a facility that requires a mask, patrons must respect the decision of the business and either comply or choose not to visit the establishment,” the province said in a news release.
“We don’t really have a mandatory (rule) on masks after July 11. If anyone wants to wear (one), that’s great but we’re not going to say you have to wear a mask,” said Aziz.
Techedge will be requiring its employees to continue wearing masks due to the high volume of people entering the store.
The Pot Shack, a cannabis establishment, will leave the decision up to customers and staff.
“We certainly don't want to force a person to wear a mask when really it's not required anymore,” said The Pot Shack director of retail operations RJ Fafard.
Fafard feels the province is moving in the right direction by allowing business to choose their own guidelines.
“I like it, I think that we enjoy our freedoms here and at the same time there is a safety aspect too that everyone should enjoy”