Every business has the right to refuse service to specific individuals. For example, a restaurant may refuse to serve a patron who enters the establishment without shoes or a shirt. However, enforcing a business’s right to refuse service is not always easy.
What is the Right to Refuse Service?
The right to refuse service refers to a business’s ability to turn away customers for a variety of reasons. However, a company cannot turn away a customer for just any reason. Businesses cannot refuse service to a person in a protected category, such as a person’s marital status, sexual orientation, or even political affiliation.
However, a business can refuse service for legitimate reasons. For example, a bar could refuse to serve an underage individual or someone who is showing symptoms of intoxication or is excessively unruly. Businesses can also refuse to serve customers if their establishment is at capacity or if a customer is harassing staff or other customers.
Private Companies’ Right to Refuse Service on Health Grounds
Sometimes the refusal to serve a customer is justifiable. For example, if a customer is not appropriately dressed and the outfit or lack thereof violates health codes. Businesses may also refuse service to customers who lack adequate personal hygiene, which could impact the comfort of other customers in the establishment.
In terms of actual medical conditions, a business cannot turn away a customer due to a physical disability that they have no control over. In addition, some states have protected classes relating to health. For example, in some states, you cannot turn away a customer due to their medical condition or their AIDS/HIV status.
In cases where a business is legitimately enforcing their right to refuse service, a security officer can help ensure that the customer is removed safely and without further incidents. Having a security officer onsite can help prevent serious altercations that could result in injuries or property damage.
Security Officer Training on Crowd Control
Security officers play many roles when hired to protect a business. In addition to taking control during altercations and providing general surveillance services, a security officer can also aid in crowd control.
Whether your business is hosting a significant event or encounters a lot of customers each day, crowd control is essential to prevent security incidents. Trained security officers manage crowds of all sizes and know how to deescalate conflicts effectively. You can also count on a trained security guard to handle the flow of traffic so people do not stand too close together.
Enforcing PPE Policy at the Door
Personal protective equipment (PPE) policies are designed to protect employees from exposure to certain workplace hazards. Many types of PPE are used in the workplace, such as gloves, face shields, gowns, goggles, masks, shoe covers, head covers, and respirators. However, not all employees or guests are willing to wear PPE or may forget to put it on before coming into the establishment. A security officer at the door can help enforce your company’s PPE policy.
Maintaining Social Distancing
Social distancing is an important strategy for helping to prevent the spread of certain contagious viruses and bacteria. Ideally, employees and customers should remain at least six feet apart from one another to help keep everyone safe while inside buildings and other enclosed areas. A security officer can help ensure that social distancing is being maintained from the moment that people walk into your business.
Limiting Maximum Occupancy
Allowing too many people into your business at one time puts everyone at risk. In addition to practicing social distancing and wearing protective clothing and equipment, businesses should limit the buildings’ occupancy. Non-essential companies should consider limiting their maximum occupancy to about 25 percent during health pandemics.
Removing Unruly Customers
Every business encounters the occasional unruly or rude customer. While some unruly customers will walk away after just a few moments, others will take it to the next level and could even become violent. Trained security officers are specially trained to deal with demanding customers and know tricks to help deescalate tough situations. If you want to avoid the hassle of removing unruly customers from your business yourself, consider bringing in a professional security officer.
Contact Professional Security Service Providers
Whether you post a sign or not, your business has the right to refuse service to certain individuals. However, what happens after you refuse service is often unpredictable. Many people will become irritated or angry when refused service and may lash out at employees or other customers. It is crucial to have security available to deal with these individuals swiftly and without injuries or property damage. To learn more about how security officers can help enforce a business’s right to refuse service, call APG.