When should I wear a mask?

On November 21st, the government of B.C. implemented an order requiring everyone in public indoor settings and workplaces to wear a mask. People who cannot put on or remove a mask on their own are exempt.

Why should you wear a mask?

According to the BC Centre for Disease Control, masks have a role to play in preventing the spread of COVID-19. Masks act as a barrier and help stop the spread of droplets from a person’s mouth and nose when talking, laughing, yelling, singing, coughing, or sneezing.

However, a mask is not enough to prevent the spread of COVID-19 on its own. Wearing a mask should be combined with other important protective measures such as frequent hand washing and physical distancing.

Homemade of cloth masks should have at least three layers to make sure that droplets don’t pass through the fabric and should sit closely over the mouth, nose, cheeks and chin of the person wearing it. Read more here.

Where are masks required?

British Columbians are now required to wear a mask in the following settings:

  1. Malls, shopping centres
  2. Grocery stores
  3. Coffee shops
  4. Common areas in hotels
  5. Libraries
  6. Clothing stores
  7. Liquor stores
  8. Drug stores
  9. Community centres
  10. Recreation centres
  11. City Halls
  12. Restaurants and bars when not seated at a table
  13. Common areas in apartment buildings and condos

Masks are also required in all workplaces for shared work areas and areas where physical distancing cannot be maintained. This includes:

  1. Elevators
  2. Kitchens
  3. Hallways
  4. Customer counters
  5. Break rooms

What about healthcare settings?

As of November 4th  visitors, staff, and patients are required to wear medical masks in all healthcare settings in B.C. including long-term care homes, assisted living homes, and other health care settings.

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