To the Editor:

In light of the Gov. Phil Scott’s new guidelines delivered last week, and in wanting my town to continue to be as safe as possible, I feel I have no choice to but to tell this story. On Monday, Nov. 16, my wife had an appointment to have her car inspected at Willie’s Village Auto. In an effort to stay safe and limit interactions, she called on her way to town and dropped the car at 10 a.m. without seeing anyone who works there.

They told her that it would take no longer than an hour, so she went for a walk on the rec path. When she returned an hour later, her truck had not been inspected and she went into the office to see what was happening. There was no sign on the door that indicated she wasn’t welcome to enter. The woman at the desk put a mask on and after a conversation, my wife’s truck was eventually brought in to the garage. During her time in the office, my wife had to deal with mechanics and Willy coming in and out of the office with no masks or face coverings on.

I’m quite certain this scene is played out all over the state on a daily basis as there are still people who refuse to wear a mask in the presence of others. However, this case is different. Willie Noyes is on the Stowe Select Board. He voted in favor of the Stowe Promise — please wear a mask in the presence of others — but has chosen to conduct his own business in a manner contrary and in direct opposition to that promise.

Noyes, as a member of the select board, has a responsibility to this community in both word and practice. My wife, who was now waiting outside, watched an unmasked mechanic back her truck out of the garage. An unmasked stranger in her personal space left her feeling helpless and worried.

What happened is not illegal. But it’s unethical and, as he is a member of the select board, which voted in favor of the Stowe Promise guidelines, hypocritical. He can do better and should be striving to be the example of how to operate a business during COVID. My wife has been taking her trucks to Willie Noyes for more than a decade, but this was probably the last time. I sincerely hope he starts acting more responsibly.

Jason Michaelides


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