COVID-19 Special Collection

Face Coverings and Businesses: Balancing the ADA with Public Health During COVID-19

Factsheet answering common questions from organizations (including businesses and nonprofit organizations) on balancing public health and access to customers. The FAQ covers what to say or do when a customer comes in without a mask, accommodating customers who say they cannot wear a mask, fake mask exemption cards, and what a business owner can ask a person about a disability. Certain disabilities make wearing a face covering difficult or impossible. A person with a respiratory condition, for example, may be unable to breathe effectively with a face covering. This raises questions about how to balance current government health and safety mandates with the rights that the ADA affords people with disabilities. Even during a pandemic, public health mandates do not replace the ADA; both must be considered.

Keywords (including specific disabilities and audiences): mask mandates, face coverings, Business, Americans with Disabilities Act, ADA
Disability area: Cross disability
Life area: Community participation
Product type: Factsheet/FAQ
Published: 2020-08-19
Produced by: Northwest ADA Regional Center (90DP0095 Learn more about this project.)