CERES (CBS13) – Sara Fontana is upset she was kicked out of her In-Shape gym in Ceres for not wearing a mask while working out. She has asthma and says wearing a mask while running isn’t doable.

“I fall under one of the exemptions, medical condition,” she said.

Under the state’s guidelines for face coverings, people must wear a face covering when inside any indoor public space. But people with a medical condition are exempt including those who may have a hard time breathing because of the mask.

But can a business refuse service to someone for not wearing a mask? Even if they are exempt?

Attorney Mark Reichel says a business can ask a customer if they are exempt.

“If someone is asserting an exemption, absolutely. The burden is on them obviously to prove their exemption is legitimate and to back it up with medical paperwork,” Reichel explained.

Fontana just wishes her situation was handled differently.

“They need to come up with some form of identification maybe they put us in a specific spot so people know that there is an exemption for these people working out,” she said.

Francesca Schuler, CEO of In-Shape Health Clubs, said in a statement:

Our policy has and always will be to work with members to handle exemptions. We offered our member as we do with all members an opportunity to work with us on finding an accommodation to keep her safe and all members around her safe but she chose to not take advantage of it which then could place other members in the club at risk. Her membership has not been canceled. We are reaching out to her again and hoping we can find a safe and suitable solution.

Comments (5)
  1. If you can’t wear a mask the doctor should be happy to write a letter which should be carried at all times. If you read the mandate, you should have on a face shield if you are medically exempt from wearing a mask!

  2. Carole E Light says:

    OK I call BS. I have asthma and if her asthma is bad enough to think she doesn’t have to wear a mask, then she sure can’t run. Running at all with asthma “isn’t doable” with or without a mask. And with coronavirus around, who wants someone huffing and puffing in an enclosed space with no mask? Just some entitled knothead who wants to find a way to decide the rules shouldn’t apply to her.

  3. Debbie Siebrecht says:

    I also have asthma and have difficulty breathing if I wear a mask too long. I just pull it down and breathe through my nose then I am at least protecting other people. Either suck it up and wear the mask or stay home.

  4. Invoke Plexiglass says:

    COVID-19 particles average a size of 0.1 Microns.
    This is not filtered by N95 masks.
    This is nowhere near filtered by surgical masks, nor cloth covering.

    A COVID-19 virus particle could stack side by side 10 times, and still enter through surgical mask pores.

    The mask creates a jet-stream of exhalation/cough which is worse and totally nulls the 6-ft distance.

    OH but, plexiglass is the cure for the virus.

    1. A majority of the virus particles travel via water droplets which are much larger and can be blocked by cloth or surgical masks. You’re simply making stuff up.

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