Former UPS store, sued by AG for no-mask policy, continues as independent

The former Newport UPS store has been reorganized and renamed, following separation from UPS parent organization and a lawsuit filed by Vermont Attorney General TJ Donovan – both prompted by a no-mask policy.

Republished from the

NEWPORT — Despite being thrust into the spotlight over the last few days and having to end his franchise with UPS, store owner Michael Desautels is optimistic about the future of his business in downtown Newport.

Vermont Attorney General TJ Donovan Friday sued Desautels for violating Gov. Phil Scott’s executive order requiring employees to wear masks.

The State alleges that by refusing to follow the mandatory health and safety requirements around employee mask use, the Defendants placed both employees and members of the public at risk due to the spread of COVID-19. In seeking the preliminary injunction, the State is asking the Court to require the Defendants to cease violating the Governor’s COVID-19-related orders, according to a statement issued Friday.

The store also posted a sign telling customers employees would not be wearing masks. UPS severed connections with the store last week.

Desautels says that moving forward, Derby-Port Press, a print company he purchased in 2018, will continue to operate from the same location on Main Street.

As of Friday, the store was open and welcoming customers inside.

Derby-Port Press will focus on the printing aspect of the business, which Desautels says is not all that different from the way things were before he came under fire for choosing not to wear a mask inside his store.

“A lot of people don’t realize all the printing that we do here, so now we will just be focusing more on that,” Desautels said.

The store has always been heavy on the printing side of the business, providing a full range of print services such as banners, flyers, posters, t-shirts, as well as vehicle graphics.

Derby-Port Press will also still have a full-time graphic designer in-store who can help customers get logos and other designs formatted and printed.

“We look forward to providing more of these printing services for local businesses, sports teams, we can do it all,” Desautels added.

With most of the news recently focusing on the UPS franchise being pulled, Desautels admits that the change will be inconvenient to the community, but in reality, only a few of the store’s overall services will change.

The most noticeable change will be the Amazon dropoff point, which allows Amazon customers to send their merchandise back to the online retailer from certain locations.

Derby-Port Press will also no longer be able to function as a Comcast and AT&T dropoff point, as those were contracts secured through UPS.

This is not the first setback the store has faced since the pandemic began.

“When the border closed, we lost a lot of mailbox customers,” Desautels said.

Before the pandemic, many Canadians had set up mailboxes at the store for shipping purposes and drove down to pick them up in Newport.

The Canadian customers the store brought into the area would often continue to shop or eat downtown.

The one other change Desautels noted was that they will be closing one hour earlier.

Store hours will move to Monday through Friday from 8-5, and Saturday from 8-Noon.

Comments on all Vermont Daily posts:

  1. The Republicans listed above are supporting a candidate from different party, who lost a Republican primary and subequently left the…


8 replies »

  1. No matter how one comes down on the “great mask debate”, what we have here is yet another example of how the ruling party of our government teams up with a large private sector corporation to bludgeon a citizen and entrepreneur into submission…the classic definition of FASCISM.

  2. Perhaps a thorough examination of the State’s evidence and cross examination as to the effectiveness of mask wearing to combat a microscopic virus, the constitutionality of enforcement of such a thing never done ever before, and all the junk science that changed from month to month over a year’s time…a good attorney with bulldog instincts could turn the case upside down on the State’s head and expose the fraud – every case against these ridiculous rules has the potential to expose and dispose of it

  3. The face mask Executive Order from Social Democrat Phil Scott had to be tested for the good of the people of Vermont!! We need freedom of speech and choice for the health of our being,and the tyranny of the State must stop!! I do not understand how Attorney General of Vermont,TJ Donovan can sue a Vermonter with taxpayer money,for not wearing face masks like he cares about the health and welfare of Vermonters,when he supported Planned Parenthood With taxpayer funds!!

  4. the tryanny of Vermont, harassing a small business in these most difficult of times proves without a doubt Vermont is not business friendly!

  5. I enthusiastidqally applaud Mr Desautels for his leadership and courage to stand up to the State! I encourage everyone to do the same. No legislation was ever passed requiring the wearing of a mask so they run to the courts for support. This is how things get done in today’s Unless I am mistaken the “request” from our elected “administrators” (the omission of the term “leaders” is not without intent) is an “either/or”: a mask or six foot distancing. Not both! Where do we get these people we wind up having to vote for? Congratulations Mr. Desaultels.

  6. Above all – by the State’s own admittance, the vaccine does not give immunity against the virus – people must still wear a mask and social distance…let that sink in – why are we taking a vaccine that doesn’t do what the government has repeatedly said would allow us to get back to “normal” The State is boxed in and has no where to go with this sham – the economy is tanking and they are running around trying to prop up a scam and calling us all racists…SHTF

  7. Mr. Desautels is truly courageous for standing up for what is right. I hope his new business takes off and he wins a large settlement in the court case. Maybe then we can finally begin to put an end to this nonsense. Real science shows that masks are totally ineffective in stopping the spread of any virus, and furthermore can compromise the health of the wearer. Tammy Clark and Kristen Meghan, two certified experts on OSHA standards for PPE, have spoken out about both the ineffectiveness and dangers of face masks. Of course, countless practicing doctors and other medical experts have spoken as well.

    So we have been in a “pandemic” for nearly a year now, although the total death count from all causes is no higher than in previous years. Could that be because there are generous financial incentives for calling COVID the cause of death, when it was actually something else? A lockdown that was supposed to have lasted for only a few weeks to “flatten the curve” so hospitals would not be overwhelmed, is being continued, apparently until there are no more cases of COVID in the entire state, which of course will never happen. A “case” is determined by a PCR test, whose own creator said was never intended to diagnose any illness. The virus can supposedly be spread between two people who are not both wearing face masks and standing six feet apart, and yet it takes a six inch swab shoved up a person’s nose to the base of their brain in order to find enough of a viral presence to complete the test. Positive test results are included in the number of cases, even though many of the people who test positive are asymptomatic, meaning that they are not sick, and may never become sick from this virus. Now we have a couple of vaccines which have potential serious, and even life threatening, side effects, using a new, untested technology, and not providing any immunity in the traditional sense. At least one of the likely side effects is an enhanced immune response to the live virus when it is later encountered by a vaccinated person, causing a more severe case of the disease. That is what killed the animals in previous testing of vaccines for coronaviruses. Animal testing has been bypassed for this one, so we are the Guniea pigs (or ferrets). At some point, the taking of the vaccine may become mandatory in order to participate in society, or at least penalties will be imposed on anyone refusing to take it.

    Since there is not now a state of emergency, nor has there been one for a number of months, why are these tyrannical mandates still in effect?

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