February 10, 2022 Op Ed by: Andy Ellen, President and General Counsel, NC Retail…
RALEIGH, NC – The North Carolina Retail Merchants Association (NCRMA) issued the following statement from Andy Ellen, president and general counsel, regarding the issuance of Executive Order 147 by Governor Roy Cooper and the face covering requirement.
“The main concern for all retailers has and continues to be the health and safety of their employees and their customers. At 5:00 pm today, Governor Roy Cooper’s Executive Order requires customers to wear a face covering while in a retail establishment or restaurant.
Since the onset of the COVID-19, retailers have made wide-ranging changes in their operations with safety in mind. They have incorporated social distancing procedures and worked tirelessly to keep stores open, shelves stocked, and carts sanitized. Many have shortened hours to institute stringent cleaning processes. Additionally, there are many stores that were closed for weeks and are struggling to recover from the shutdown and they are anxiously awaiting customers to return to shop. These businesses need your help both economically and with compliance with the face covering requirement. These businesses simply cannot afford a civil penalty or a criminal penalty because of customers not abiding by Governor Cooper’s Order.
We ask you to be patient with retailers and their employees as you go out to shop in the coming days and weeks, as they continue to navigate these unprecedented challenges. Please wear a mask or face covering and be considerate if you are asked to do so when you are shopping. Also, we can’t all know the reason another customer isn’t wearing a mask, such as due to a health condition, so be kind to each other.”
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NCRMA President Andy Ellen
Senior Communications Director Ann Edmondson
209 Fayetteville Street
Raleigh, NC 27601
About the North Carolina Retail Merchants Association
The North Carolina Retail Merchants Association (NCRMA) is a nonprofit trade association organized in 1902 to improve the business climate for retailers in North Carolina. Over 100 years later, NCRMA remains the voice of the retail industry for North Carolina. NCRMA represents the interests of individual merchants before the General Assembly and serves as a vital link to state government. Its credibility lies in its longevity and commitment to serving the ever-changing needs of its members. The Association’s membership includes more than 25,000 stores from across the state whose business represents 75 percent of North Carolina’s retail sales volume. NCRMA serves both large and small retailers from multi-state chains to local “mom and pops” and all types of merchants including antique, apparel, art, automotive, book, carpet, department, drug, electronics, floral, furniture, grocery, hardware, jewelry, paint and variety stores. For more information, visit https://www.ncrma.org/.