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Lincoln security guards helping businesses enforce mask requirement

Published: Jul. 20, 2020 at 5:27 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - At any business across town, there's a lot of people wearing masks.

Five months into a global pandemic it's a common sight, but for the next six weeks it's the law.

Lincoln security guards are helping to enforce it.

"We're assisting from the standpoint of being friendly, being non confrontational, being helpful and offering information and masks when we can," Janis Strautkalms, owner of Lincoln Guards Security said.

Strautkalms said he's had guards helping businesses check employee temperatures for months so helping keep people safe amid a pandemic isn't new.

“Nobody plans to have to do this,” Strautkalms said. “You have employees that are doing what they’re good at - serving customers, the last thing they want to do is anything extra.”

His business isn't the only one.

Terrickeo Watson, owner of A.M. Security said he's trained his crew to take on this new role.

"Not everyone agrees with face masks," Watson said. "So I know businesses are having trouble with it, even before this mandate."

Both said the goal is voluntary compliance.

"Hopefully we can all just follow this so we can go back to normal," Watson said.

They said just like people have the right to decide not to wear a mask, businesses have the right to refuse service, and right now it's the law to do so.

"You should always be prepared that if you don't wear a mask, you may not be able to go in," Strautkalms said. "You may not get service if you don't have a mask on, but that's the last thing these businesses want."

Lincoln Police said complaints of people not wearing masks should be forwarded to the health department.

Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird advised the Lincoln Police Department not to ticket people for not wearing a mask, and to instead focus on education.

Though police will ticket if the situation escalates into a criminal offense, like trespassing.

Copyright 2020 KOLN. All rights reserved.

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