The internet is standing behind a person who left a job interview when the hiring manager demanded they remove their face mask.
Posted to the Reddit forum r/antiwork, u/EchoGecko795 earned over 11,500 upvotes and 1,200 comments for writing “I was ordered to remove my mask during an in person interview today, so I left.”
In the post, they reveal it happened before the two people had even introduced themselves.
“And I do mean I was ordered. It was not a polite request, or even a passive aggressive quip. So I got up and left,” u/EchoGecho795 wrote.
They added that the hiring manager was shocked that they’d walk out on the interview and tried to backtrack, saying that if they had a medical condition, they could continue wearing the mask, providing they had a doctor’s note.
“In today’s world of phone and video interviews where no mask is required there is no reason to demand to someone to remove their mask in an in person interview other than a power play, and I am way past f****s to give for that BS,” they said.
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues, masking mandates have been controversial. Most recently, United States District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle of the Middle District of Florida, who was appointed by former President Donald Trump, struck down mask mandates for airplanes, buses and trains, ruling that the order had exceeded the authority of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
There have been a number of protests both for and against mask mandates. Critics of mandates say their freedom is being infringed upon by requiring mask wearing and point to the decline of COVID-19 cases across the country as evidence mandates aren’t needed anymore. Supporters point out that though cases are declining, COVID-19 is still active, and there are spikes of new cases as new variants arise.
Many Redditors condemned the hiring manager’s request.
“Easily the kind of employer that will force covid positive people to come to work while within the contagious period (‘it’s just a cold’), get others sick due to exposure, force the rest to come to work sick, and then fire you if you call out,” u/TheAngryLala wrote.
“Our one director killed our coworker. Dude was feeling sick, got tested, came into work with no mask, covid positive. Other guy in his department had a weak immune system, caught covid and died on a ventilator. No one addresses this or talked about it, but us grunts will say outright ‘Dave killed jerry’,” u/Hita-san-chan wrote.
“You are so right to do this. Under the interview you have no legal link to them and you have not signed any contract . Imagine how they will break any boundaries you set up should you agree to work for them. It is nearly the same as someone walking up to you in the street and telling you to take it off. In fact, it is worse. You are in an enclosed space and they did not seem to ask you if you had a reason to have it on,” u/bad_pangolin wrote.
“If this is how you treat me when I don’t work for you, I don’t want to experience what it would be like if I did,” u/houck wrote.
Newsweek reached out to u/EchoGecko795 for comment.