By Devin Fehely

MORGAN HILL (KPIX) — Business owners across the Bay Area are expressing frustration with public health officials once again urging them to ask customers and employees to wear masks when indoors.

“My staff doesn’t want to wear a mask and I certainly don’t,” said Jim Angelopoulos, owner of Yolked restaurant in Morgan Hill.

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He says his business has bounced back to pre-pandemic levels since the state’s reopening and feels returning to mask wearing is a step backward.

“Why should my staff — who’ve been vaccinated — go back to wearing masks? They don’t like it. Masks are very restrictive, especially in this type of environment,” Angelopoulos said.

Faced with rising case numbers and the emergence of the more contagious Delta variant, public health officials on Friday urged everyone to resume wearing masks when indoors as “an added layer of protection for unvaccinated residents.”

Yuriko Fulcher, who is vaccinated, thinks that’s a reasonable request.

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“For now, I still wear a mask in crowded places,” she said.

Her husband David felt differently.

“I’m not opposed to a person who wants to wear a mask. But for me personally, I don’t like to wear a mask,” he said.

And caught in the middle of this public health policy debate are business and restaurant owners on whom it would fall to enforce the masking recommendation.

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“If they come in through that door and I approach them and say, ‘Sorry, in order to eat inside you’re going to have to wear a mask.’ If they can’t dine inside, they will likely leave,” said business owner Dan Holder.