Mask use is mandatory in public places
With a spike in the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths in BC, the provincial government ordered masks to be worn in indoor public places as of late November 2020. Here are some examples of these places:
Malls, shopping centres, coffee shops, and retail and grocery stores
Liquor and drug stores
Airports, city halls, libraries, community and recreation centres
Restaurants, pubs and bars
Places of public worship
On public transportation, in a taxi or ride-for-hire vehicle
Common areas of office buildings, courthouses, hospitals and hotels
Common areas of sport and fitness centres when not engaged in physical activity
Common areas of post-secondary institutions and non-profit groups
Who is exempt from wearing a mask?
People who can’t wear a mask or who can’t put on or remove a mask without the assistance of others are exempt. A person may not be able to wear a mask for a psychological, behavioural or health condition, or due to a physical, cognitive or mental impairment.
What about kids?
Masks aren’t recommended for children under age two. Health officials encourage them for children aged two-to-11 in public setting, but these children are not covered by the provincial enforcement order. Under that order, people age 12 and older must wear a mask in a public indoor space, unless they’re exempt.
Can I wear a face shield instead of a mask?
No. For the purposes of this order, a mask or face covering is defined as a medical or non-medical mask that covers the nose and mouth. Face shields aren’t a substitute for a mask because there is an opening below the mouth.
BC GUIDES AND LINKS
• COVID-19: Here’s everything you need to know about the novel coronavirus
• COVID-19: Have you been exposed? Here are all B.C. public health alerts
• COVID-19 at B.C. schools: Here are the school district exposure alerts
• COVID-19: Avoid these hand sanitizers that are recalled in Canada
• COVID-19: Here’s where to get tested in Metro Vancouver
• B.C. COVID-19 Symptom Self-Assessment Tool