Starting on Saturday you can’t go into Jerry’s No Frills in Smithers without a mask or some type of face covering.
“Masks will be mandatory for shopping in our store and we trust our customers to respect this rule, as they do any other guidelines for grocery shopping,” reads a post on the store’s Facebook page. “We trust our customers will respect this policy and do their part to keep their fellow shoppers safe. This new policy is to assist with keeping our customers and employees safe. We appreciate your support as we work together to stop the spread of COVID-19.”
The policy comes after the head office for No Frills announced that masks will be needed to visit all its stores. Reaction to the Smithers announcement was mixed on Facebook.
“With Covid-19 numbers climbing in the North with an influx of visitors, we need to follow covid-19 policy. Better to be safe than sorry. I’m glad to know this and follow the advice, it’s for my safety,” wrote one commenter.
“It is a false sense of security,” wrote another. “Practice common sense people. If you’re sick, stay home.”
Neither Bulkley Valley Wholesale nor Safeway in Smithers currently require shoppers to wear masks.
The franchisee of the Smithers No Frills, Jerry Rodgers, says the policy is about protecting the community. “It’s a good thing for everyone,” he told The Interior News.
The policy comes as coronavirus infections continue to climb across B.C. The province announced 68 new confirmed cases of COVID on Thursday and one death.