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Man refuses to wear mask at Bend donut shop, has altercation with manager

'I'm arguing with a grown man that simply had to put on a little piece of cloth.'

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) -- Wearing masks isn’t new, but with new guidelines, old issues are resurfacing. 

Dallas Lowery, manager at Sweetheart Donuts, said a customer came into her shop without a mask Friday morning.

"It gets more frustrating, the longer it goes on, because this isn't new -- masks didn't come up yesterday,” Lowery told NewsChannel 21 later. 

She explained to the man that her store on Southeast Third Street in Bend gets too busy to check vaccination cards for every customer. So to keep everyone safe, they are still enforcing a mask rule.

"Not because we want to, not because we think it's fun, but just to keep our customers and our staff safe,” Lowery said. “If my staff gets COVID, we can't do donuts."

Lowery said the man left the store to get what she assumed was a mask.

However, he then came back with his sleeve over his face.

Lowery explained that wasn't good enough, and the man could use the drive-thru if he was truly opposed or had a medical issue preventing him from wearing a mask. 

Then she says, it got ugly.

"He got frustrated and he left … He used some vulgar language about me leaving the store,” Lowery recalled. 

"I luckily had two other customers in the store that thanked me for enforcing this and not allowing people to do what they want simply because they want to."

Lowery said with the new Centers for Disease Control and Oregon Health Authority updated guidance, allowing vaccinated people to keep their masks off in certain areas, she's noticed an increase in opposition.

"There's no need for that,” Lowery said. “We're adults. I'm not arguing with a 2-year-old, I'm arguing with a grown man that simply had to put on a little piece of cloth."

The guidelines set out by the OHA state if you are fully vaccinated and a business chooses to check vaccine cards, you don't have to wear a mask.

However, if a private business chooses not to check cards or to continue a mask policy, both vaccinated and unvaccinated people have to follow their rules and wear a mask.

Lowery says she doesn't mind explaining the store's policy, but will not tolerate someone being disrespectful to her or her employees.

"I understand having to answer questions about our mandate,” Lowery said. “I understand some people want to know why, but you don't have to be rude. And that's where I draw the line." 

Article Topic Follows: Coronavirus

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Noah Chast

Noah Chast is a multimedia journalist for NewsChannel 21. Learn more about Noah here.


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