By Kristina Rex

BOSTON (CBS) — One Boston gym owner says the city’s new indoor mask mandate is “crushing” for her industry.

Jess Fracalossi, who owns the Handle Bar, which has five studios across Boston, says she feels the mandate is just a political statement. “It’s just a statement and it affects businesses like mine tremendously,” she said.

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Fracalossi told WBZ that her studio has followed all protocols since March 2020 and has yet to have an active case of COVID-19 come through the doors.

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While Mayor Kim Janey has said a mask mandate will help the economy stay open, Fracalossi says it’ll cause her to lose customers who don’t want to ride a stationary bike with a mask on.

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“It’s been a tremendously difficult year for our industry and our business, and this news is crushing at a time when we were really waiting for students to come back [to the city], waiting for people to go back to the office,” she explained. “This was going to be a moment to sort of catch our heads above water.”

Kristina Rex