Woman ejected from Sainsbury’s in Dartford over face mask

Heated footage has emerged of police officers ejecting a couple from a Sainsbury’s in Dartford after they refused to wear a mask.

The footage emerged on Reddit of a female shopper embroiled in a heated exchange with officers in Dartford on Saturday.

The ‘anti-masker’ woman films herself challenging the Kent Police officers after they requested proof of her exemption, before she is then escorted out of the store.

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A Kent Police spokesperson confirmed they had been called to assist staff in asking a couple to leave the shop on Saturday, January 16.

Officers escorted them out of the Sainsbury’s, and “no further action will be taken.”

This comes as major supermarkets, including Morrisons, Tesco and Sainsbury’s, have clamped down on mask wearing in shops, banning anyone not wearing one unless they can prove they are exempt.

Face coverings are already mandatory in retail areas, shops and supermarkets at all times except for children under 11, but there is some debate in the law on the need to prove it.

In the video, the officers are seen speaking to a woman in a Sainsbury’s, and ask her if she has a medical exemption card.

The woman refuses, replying: “I don’t need one, don’t need any proof.”

She repeatedly asks if the officers are doctors, telling police “you have not right to ask me what my disability is” and “it is against the law”.

In the video, the officers calmly explain to the woman that they were called by the store’s manager, and it is not against the law.

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The male officer explains that “Sainsbury’s don’t want you to shop here (without a mask).”

The female officer then calmly states: “Regardless of whether or not you are wearing a mask or not the manager has told you that he is not going to serve you.”

As the exchange progresses, the woman tries to convince the officers she is within the law, adding that they and Sainsbury’s are liable of a fine of up to £9,000.

As she is escorted out of the store, the woman states “this is discrimination,”
 the woman continues to argue that she is within the law, calling it discrimination and liable of a fine of up to £9,000, before adding “I’ll be taking this to court.”

One of the officers simply replies “Okay see you in court, have a lovely day.”

According to the government’s guidance on face coverings “you do not need to seek advice or request a letter from a medical professional about your reason for not wearing a face covering.”

But the Police Federation say officers can still take action against members of the public who do not comply with the rules without valid exemption.

A police spokesman said: “At 10.55am on Saturday 16 January 2021 Kent Police was called to Sainsbury’s in Dartford to assist staff, who had asked a man and a woman to leave due to them not wearing a face mask.

“Officers attended and spoke to the couple, who were then escorted from the shop. No further action will be taken.”

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