Some business owners push back against California mask mandate

Local News

(KTXL) — Countless businesses across the county were forced to close their doors forever because they could not bounce back from extended closures and lost revenue. 

So, it probably comes as no surprise that despite California upholding the mask mandate until June 15 some business owners will not require customers to wear masks. 

“I’m going by the CDC rules,” said Michael Helmrich, owner of The Mandarin Restaurant. “I’m not gonna let him dictate, and he doesn’t have the authority anyhow to mandate anything like that.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says those who are fully vaccinated are no longer required to wear a mask outdoors or inside as long as they are not among large crowds. 

Retail giants such as Target, Walmart and Costco are no longer requiring that customers wear masks if they are vaccinated. 

Shoppers at The Blue Ox on K Street support that sentiment. 

“For me, where I kinda trip about it, if it’s June 15th, well, maybe it’ll be August, then it’ll be September, October. And I don’t need an approval to live my life,” said Russ Trach, an Orangevale resident. 

The Blue Ox owner, Ibrahim Abukhdair says he has never enforced mask wearing at his business. 

“It’s about time that people need to go back their old ways. Don’t let this affect you. Rise up against it. They’ve instilled fear in us. That’s not this country. That’s not what we’re built on,” Abukhdair said. 

For 500 Fahrenheit Pizza owner Roger Saini, he is requiring his workers to continue to wear masks, even as they have been fully vaccinated. 

“We’re gonna stick to whatever the mandate is because we’re in the state and the county. So, whatever the county requires us that’s what we’re doing following the guidelines with that,” Saini said. 

All of them, however, are grateful for their faithful patrons and hope they can continue to serve them. 

“If you want come in here and wear a mask, by all means. If you’re afraid and you’re all upset because we’re not wearing masks, please stay away. It’s quite easy. You have a choice,” Helmrich said. 

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