Safety tip: best practices to address unmasked customers

Jul 23, 2020
Written by wpengine

On July 2 Washington Governor Jay Inslee issued a statewide mandate that face coverings are required of employees, vendors, contractors, customers, and visitors in the workplace, unless covered by a medical or other exemption. Businesses are encouraged to provide an accommodation for customers unable to wear a face covering safely with options such as curbside service, delivery, or service by appointment.

Anticipating exchanges between businesses and unmasked customers, the document offers some do’s and don’ts. The Governor’s office has provided detailed instructions for a variety of situations that might arise with unmasked customers. If a customer or visitor is not wearing a face covering, businesses should take the following steps with these best practices.

At this time a face shield is not considered a replacement for a face mask. Face shields provide good droplet protection for the wearer, but the purpose of using a cloth face covering or mask is to protect others. Because people can be infected and actively transmitting the virus without knowing it, coverings stop the virus at the source — the mouth and nose — from getting into the air. It prevents workers from passing the virus to other workers and customers.

Every situation may be slightly or even vastly different. We therefore suggest that you do some role playing with your employees so they can be better prepared depending upon what sort of situation might arise.

WR employs Rick Means as Director of Safety & Education who is available to members to help draw up safety plans and suggest topics for safety meetings. Contact him at 360-943-9198, Ext. 118 or [email protected]