Queensland musical instrument store Guitar Exchange appears to have a no-mask policy on its premises, which is at odds with pretty much all health advice during a global pandemic.
The Morayfield shop, just north of Brisbane, has a sign on its door reading: “No masks permitted in the store.”
“Your body makes particles when you are healing. They are not contagious,” it continues.
“If you are fragile and believe you need to wear a mask, do not enter.”
A photo of the sign was first shared in a one-star Google Maps review of the store back in September.
“Clearly none of you have a science degree to be advertising this,” the user wrote.
“What an absolute joke of a shop.”
On Tuesday night, people began flooding the business with even more bad reviews over its anti-mask stance.
“No regard for customer safety. Spreads false information,” wrote one person.
Another reviewer made quite a poignant comparison: “No regard for hygiene or their customers’ safety. Avoid this place like the plague.”
The photo’s even been shared to Twitter, where even more people called out the policy.
In general, Queensland Health isn’t recommending face masks at the moment because community transmission is under control.
However, some people with underlying medical conditions are still encouraged to wear masks wherever necessary.
“We understand there are situations where you may not be able to maintain social distancing,” the official advice from the Queensland government also says.
“Keep a mask with you, so that if you get into one of those situations, you have some added protection.
“When attending a big event or travelling on public transport we strongly recommend you wear a mask especially when entering, exiting or moving through areas where lots of people are gathered.”
It’s unclear where this pseudoscientific nonsense about “particles” came from, however it appears to conflate antibodies (proteins used by the immune system to fight viruses and other diseases) with the kind of droplets that come out of our mouths and noses, and which are the main way diseases like COVID-19 are transmitted from person-to-person.
Note that antibodies and droplets are rarely referred to simply as “particles” by actual healthcare professionals, but they are often referred to as “particles” by people making shit up online. That should be a huge red flag in itself.
Guitar Exchange did not respond to a request for comment in time for publication, so it’s unclear whether the policy has actually ever been enforced.
For now, it seems people are combatting these kinds of anti-mask attitudes by leaving scathing reviews online.