Farmers' market staff confronted man who refused to wear mask in Summerside

·2 min read
Manager Don MacDonald stands in front of the Summerside Farmers’ Market building. On Saturday, the market dealt with a man who refused to wear a mask and didn’t want to leave.  (Travis Kingdon/CBC - image credit)
Manager Don MacDonald stands in front of the Summerside Farmers’ Market building. On Saturday, the market dealt with a man who refused to wear a mask and didn’t want to leave. (Travis Kingdon/CBC - image credit)

The Summerside Farmers' Market confronted a man and told him to leave Saturday after he refused to wear a mask indoors.

According to COVID-19 public health restrictions on P.E.I., everyone must wear a mask covering their nose and mouth while inside a public building, unless they are at a restaurant while eating or drinking. Exemptions are made for children under 2 and people with certain medical conditions.

"We confronted him and he said he didn't have to wear a mask, that we were idiots because we were wearing the mask," said Don MacDonald, manager of the market.

"[He said] we were causing the problems and he was healthy and it wasn't necessary and he wasn't going to wear one."

Masks have been mandatory inside all indoor public spaces on P.E.I. since November 2020.
Masks have been mandatory inside all indoor public spaces on P.E.I. since November 2020. (Travis Kingdon/CBC)

Staff asked the man to leave, but he instead went to buy something from a vendor.

MacDonald said he told the vendor not to sell to the man, or they would need to leave the market as well. The man then left.

MacDonald said he didn't alert police to the incident, but if the same man returns, he may take further action.

"We have to follow every rule that the Health Department gives us, or we'll be closed," said MacDonald.

"And we're trying to do that, we have extra help on and everything just to make sure that people are following the rules."

'Can't have one or two spoiling everything'

MacDonald said this is the first time since the mask rule came into effect last November that the market has had this kind of issue.

"We did have a couple of problems before with a couple of people, and they just said, 'Well, we won't bother coming back to the market,'" said MacDonald.

"We're getting 700 or 800 people coming through here [every] weekend and we can't have one or two spoiling everything for everybody."

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