Starting July 10 (albeit with a week-long grace period built-in to allow businesses and residents time to adjust), non-medical masks or face-coverings will be mandatory inside most indoor public spaces in the city. The city passed the motion just days after Mayor Bonnie Crombie appeared at a Region of Peel press conference to support a region-wide mandatory mask bylaw.
Sam Rogers, director of enforcement with the city, said the temporary bylaw will be in effect at a number of public indoor spaces, including retail stores, places of worship, shopping malls, personal care establishments (such as salons and spas), open houses, and municipal buildings.
Some people will be exempt from wearing a mask, including children under two years of age and those with medical conditions that make masking too difficult. Rogers also said that masks are not required when people are eating and drinking, receiving a facial or beard trim (when permitted by the province), swimming or playing sports.
For those who have to wear them, non-medical masks would include a face covering such as a balaclava, bandana or similar items that cover the nose, mouth and chin.
Mayor Bonnie Crombie said the move was a precautionary measure to help avoid another wave of COVID-19.
“We have businesses that are open,” she said. “We want to ensure that they stay open.”
While council supported a one-week grace period after July 10, when fines for non-compliance begin, they could be a minimum of $500 and maximum of $100,000.
Coun. John Kovac was the lone vote on council against the mandatory mask bylaw.
It is important to follow the bylaw in order to prevent a 2nd wave of COVID-19 cases.