By a vote of eight to zero, with one person abstaining, Springfield City Council passed an ordinance requiring face masks to be worn in public. KSMU asked several local business owners for their reactions.
Angela Oliver owns Mrs. Oliver’s Events, which offers wedding and event planning, as well as bartending and DJ services in Springfield and throughout southwest Missouri. She says face masks make the job a little more challenging, because they restrict breathing and some of her staff have asthma. But overall, she didn’t have a problem with the ordinance.
“It’s just a little bit of extra work but not too bad,” she told KSMU.
The business already uses masks and social distancing to make clients comfortable.
Adam Williams, co-owner of Adam and Dawn Photography, opposed the ordinance, saying it’s going to have a big impact on his wedding photography business.
“We aren’t against masking in public. What we are against is some of the things that were snuck into the mandate that specifically involve weddings,” Williams says.
The mandate requires wedding guests to wear masks, and it also includes a seating limit at wedding venues. There is an exception that lets the wedding party take photos without masks, but Williams worries the ordinance will scare couples off from having weddings right now.
“I foresee there being a lot more wedding postponements, which is going to lead to us wedding professionals in the industry really losing a lot of revenue, he says.
Kim Mai, who owns the Vietnamese restaurant Pho Kim on Campbell Avenue, says she thinks the ordinance will help keep customers and staff safe. She told KSMU everyone in the community should protect each other by following the new rules. Even though the restaurant saw sales drop when quarantine began, Kim says it’s for the best. In the meantime, she’ll keep the restaurant open.
“We try the best we can," Kim says. "We try to survive. We try to keep the business.”
At her restaurant, she says the staff already wear masks.