Sioux Falls business owner discusses store’s new mask requirement

Local News

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — The city of Sioux Falls won’t be mandating masks. That proposal failed by 5 to 4 vote at Tuesday night’s city council meeting.

But you will still need a face covering if you go into some businesses in town.

A longtime Sioux Falls business just rolled out its new mask policy on Monday.

JJ’s Wine, Spirits & Cigars owner Tom Slattery says his staff have been masked up for months.

“We decided to extend it to our customers, vendors, repair people, anybody who comes in our door because of the increase in cases, the increase in hospitalizations, and obviously, the increase of deaths in our community,” JJ’s Wine, Spirits & Cigars owner Tom Slattery said.

Signs alerting customers of the mask requirement are posted right on the front doors of JJ’s Wine, Spirits, & Cigars.

“Anytime you’re in the building and not seated enjoying food or drink with friends and family you need to have a face covering on,” Slattery said.

Slattery says so far the policy is going over well.

“The amount of social media reaction that we’ve gotten has been extremely overwhelming and positive though. People are very happy that we’re giving them an option of coming here when they’re trying to be ultra safe. We have not had anybody walk in our door and say they will not put a mask on,” Slattery said.

Customer Carly Heard, who was enjoying time with friends at the 3.0 Bar inside JJ’s on Wednesday, says the requirement isn’t a problem at all.

“It doesn’t interrupt my experience I’m having by any means, and I think it’s a good way to stay safe and allow them as a business to still be successful and have a safe environment for their patrons,” Customer Carly Heard said.

“Our city council and our state has said it’s up to us to ensure the safety of customers when they come into our store. We feel this is the right approach in doing that. I think other businesses, once they look at the data and they listen to the scientists and they listen to the doctors and they listen to the healthcare professionals on the frontlines they will see the same thing we saw, and I’m hoping that they follow in suit and do the same thing,” Slattery said.

If you don’t have a mask, JJ’s will give you one for free.

According to a Facebook post, JJ’s Axes and Ales also has a mask policy.

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