“We need a cultural revolution,” Benioff told CNN Business. He argued that countries with cultures that were more likely to accept wearing masks had been more successful against the virus.
“This whole mask controversy reminds me when people were first told they had to wear seat belts and they didn’t want to,” said Benioff. “People said, ‘But if I get hurt, it’s my body. It’s my life.'”
“At some point the government has to intervene and say, ‘Yes, you have to wear a mask, and if you don’t wear a mask, you will be fined,'” he added. “Just like if you didn̵
Kroger and Kohl’s have also announced that all customers must wear masks. And the National Retail Federation, the main lobby group for this industry, has also asked for masks in stores. The requirements are a shift from earlier this year, when most major retailers and grocers were reluctant to issue mask mandates because they feared angering buyers who refused to wear them.
Other major business leaders have also promoted mask wear. Microsoft founder Bill Gates recently attributed an increase in US coronavirus cases to lack of testing and contact tracking, and lack of mask wear. He said other countries that had done these things effectively had seen the numbers decline.
Meanwhile, Benioff said he wanted to make masks more portable. He joins CNBC presenter Jim Cramer to sponsor a mask design competition organized by the nonprofit XPrize Foundation. The $ 1 million prize money will be split between three teams that are developing a surgical face mask for consumers that will promote positive behavior when wearing masks.