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Can a business turn you away if you're NOT wearing a mask?

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Can a business turn you aware if you're not wearing a face mask? (KUTV)

(KUTV) – Across the country there is growing resistance against wearing face masks.

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With more and more local businesses and national chains requiring customers to wear masks, some people argue it’s limiting their freedoms.

But according to legal experts, businesses are well within their rights to refuse service to those not abiding by their policy to wear a mask.

Stylists at Sheer Indulgence Salon in Bountiful have been back to work for nearly three weeks. When employees or customers walk in, they are required to wear a mask.

“We’re meeting all the guidelines,” said Blaine Smith, who owns the salon.

While it’s a health department requirement, he said he would have all employees and customers wearing masks, even without the policy.

“This is a way of life at least for a couple of months. This is what we have to do,” Smith said.

He’s doing his part to keep his employees and customers safe. But, like other businesses with mask requirements, he’s seen some backlash.

“I’ve had a few people who’ve said they’re claustrophobic or they don’t believe in it, or they don’t think it’s legit,” said Lynette Gardener, a stylist at the salon.

“Either don’t care about wearing masks or they think this is all a hoax or whatever,” Smith added.

“A private business has the right to require a mask,” said Ed Havas, a Salt Lake City attorney.

According to Havas, a business has the right to stop anyone from entering without a mask.

“They absolutely do. It’s similar to the ‘No shoes, no shirt, no service,'” he said.

If customers don’t like a business’ policy, they can shop elsewhere.

“Stores and businesses have an obligation, not just a right, but the obligation to protect their customer and their employees,” Havas said.

Smith said his salon has not had to turn away customers yet, but he is prepared to do so.

“They’re also infringing on our freedom to keep ourselves safe,” he said.
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