The Ontario city of Burlington is reinstating a mask mandate for government employees beginning Monday.
“We have a responsibility for the health and safety of the staff that work at the city to deliver our community services,” said Burlington Mayor Marianne Meed Ward.
“City staff will be required to wear a mask while indoors in city workplaces.”
Ward said the mandate results from a “perfect storm” of rising respiratory viruses, COVID or otherwise, and too many city staff members calling in sick.
“The decision was made by our Burlington Leadership Team to address increased absence due to illness and to provide a safer workplace,” she told the Toronto Sun.
“The requirement for masking indoors only applies to city staff, not the public.”
Ward said the mandate could end earlier than Jan 8, 2023. The city lifted its last mask mandate in March, which had been in place for nearly two years.
Burlington is the first Ontarian city to overrule Chief Medical Health Officer Dr. Kieran Moore’s decision last week not to reimplement masks.
Moore “strongly suggested” people wear masks indoors, yet, three days later, he was caught partying maskless at a snazzy indoor event in Toronto.
Last week, the Ottawa Carlton District School Board debated reimplementing mask mandates for schoolchildren. The meeting was interrupted by protestors and has been suspended until further notice.
Before the postponement, a father pled with the N95-masked school board trustees to refrain from reimposing the mandate.
He said 90% of children aren’t wearing masks, revealing where students and parents stand on the issue.
He also spoke about the negative impacts the previous mask mandates had on his four children.
“They make kids afraid of each other,” he said.
“My youngest has a friend next door…who ran over to him, and he was scared of her because he thought she was going to make him sick.”
“This is not right.”