Coolum café owner fined for not wearing a mask

The proprietor of a vegan/organic whole foods café located in the Pacific on Coolum complex on Birtwill St in Coolum and a staff member were fined over the weekend after police allegedly repeatedly asked the owner to follow health orders and wear a mask whilst serving customers and operating their business.

Police took action against the Coolum Beach business for allegedly failing to comply with Covid-19 Directions after refusing to wear a mask and failing to provide details to police.

At 2pm on Saturday, the 38-year-old Ninderry woman was arrested and taken into custody after she allegedly failed to provide information requested by officers.

It is also alleged the woman and her employees were requested to wear a facemask multiple times by police. Officers allege they attended the Birtwill Street café on Friday and requested the woman to wear a mask and returned three times on Saturday with the same request.

It will further be alleged she refused on each occasion and became verbally abusive towards officers.

The business owner has been issued with two infringements for fail to comply with Covid-19 Direction –Mask, ($1378 and $206) and a contravene requirement charge while a 34-year-old employee was also issued with an infringement for fail to comply with Covid 19 Direction – Mask, ($206).

Anyone wilfully or recklessly breaching the public health directions can expect to face enforcement action.

A spokesperson from Coolum Police said that 99 per cent of locals were doing the right thing and that the one per cent who were not could jeopardise the lifting of our restrictions – these people, the one per cent think they are above the law.

Labor candidate for Ninderry Melinda Dodds said that the entire community needed to pull together and support each other during this time.

“Mask wearing is based on expert health advice.

“The guidelines are clear that in order to protect each other and vulnerable persons in our community, we need to wear a mask. The Queensland Police Service approach continues to be based on communication, education and compassion – fines remain a last resort,” Ms Dodds said.

The proprietors of the vegan/vegetarian cafe were approached by the Advertiser for comment, however did not respond to our request.

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