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story.lead_photo.caption A sign on the front door of both Dot's Ace Hardware and Dot's Rental states that masks are highly recommended for customers. They are required for employees. Photo by Junius Stone / Texarkana Gazette.

On the front of Dot's Ace Hardware on Richmond Road as well as Dot's Rental & Sales on North Robison Road, there are signs posted in the door, stating that masks on the premises are not required for customers, but are highly encouraged.

"When the governor (Greg Abbott) issued a mandate, agreed or not, we required it of our employees," said Demita Torrans, co-owner. "If we were going to require it of our employees, we wanted to get something out on our position for the public."

"We got a call from a customer saying that 'your employees weren't wearing their masks properly and some customers weren't wearing them at all,'" said Dorothy "Dot" Williford, co-owner. "So, with those things in mind, we felt it necessary to post a store mask policy on the front doors of our establishments."

According to the sign, Dot's Rental & Sales as well as Dot's Ace Hardware require masks for employees. However, they leave it up to customers to decide what they wish to do.

"Masks are highly encouraged, however," Williford said. "We have noticed that large corporations, especially with out-of-state ownership and management, are more likely to be strict about mask policy. We feel that it is not our job to police our customers in this matter. We encourage them to do so, but we don't require it to enter our stores."

The signs have been posted for about two weeks.

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