With a statewide mask mandate now in place for Minnesota, employees at public-facing businesses now find themselves having to remind, or in some cases enforce, mask policies.
The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has said it is the responsibility of businesses to require masks for workers and customers, although certain exemptions are in place.
"If a customer who does not claim a legitimate exemption refuses to comply with face covering requirements, businesses should assess the situation and determine how best to proceed, using normal procedures for dealing with a difficult customer," MDH said in an FAQ on its website.
However, many workers may not have received training for something like mask enforcement.
Minnesota-based Training Institute, a company that specializes in mental health and trauma education, is offering an online course called "Masks Up! Seeking Voluntary Compliance amid COVID-19."
The course is designed to teach people how to establish connections and agreements, while also communicating regulations with visitors and customers.
"The course will help attendees develop tools for working to prevent escalation and, if needed, de-escalate situations," said Russ Turner, Director of the Training Institute.
The online courses cost $10, with the next two courses scheduled on August 4 and August 12 at 9:45 a.m. More information and registration details can be found on the Training Institute website.