Lafayette - During a press conference Monday, Governor John Bel Edwards announced that the state-wide mask mandate will be reinstated for both the unvaccinated and vaccinated.
Throughout the pandemic, small business owners have had the tall task of enforcing mask mandates while not alienating customers and potentially losing money.
"Every time we think we’re about to get out of the wood, it comes back, we go back to square one. Which of course I don’t like it, a lot of people don’t like it," the owner of Shawarma Guys Malek Abdalla said.
Having to wear a mask virtually everywhere you go has been something we’ve all had to adjust to during the pandemic. Trying to enforce mask mandates has been something business owners have had to adjust to.
"It wasn’t easy," said Abdalla.
He says while his business has followed covid-19 protocols based on recommendations from the CDC, it’s been a mixed bag when it comes to masks.
"There is some people who really took it in a good way," he said. "There is some people, [who] were thinking I’m offending them or I’m basically taking some right of their freedom."
"I call those mask battles," said Super Taters & More owner Jerry Bobb.
Bobb says he tries to avoid "mask battles," but he says owning a business during the pandemic comes with responsibilities.
"It’s a battle that sometimes I try to avoid but as a business owner, you have a responsibility in the community to at least try to do the right thing," Bobb said.
He says that's why his business has adjusted accordingly.
"We require call-ins. And when you call-in, it gives us an opportunity to work on your order so when you walk in, it minimizes the time you have to stand in our building," Bobb said.
While he may not like it and understands others may feel the same way, Abdalla says his business will continue to do their part in keeping the community safe.
"We have to do what we have to do basically to prevent spreading the disease more and more," he said. "So we stick whatever the guidelines are from the governor, from the CDC. We have to follow the rules basically."
The state-wide mask mandate will go into effect Wednesday and remain in effect until September first. Governor Edwards also says it may be extended beyond that if need be.