Residents of Metro Vancouver Respond to British Columbia’s Mask Policy

Do you always wear a face mask in indoor public places?

While some British Columbians are delighted that British Columbia officials lifted the mandatory mask policy on July 1, others fear there is a spike in COVID-19 cases.

Even Prime Minister John Horgan has said he will continue to cover his face, despite the relaxed restrictions.

“I’m going to wear a mask if I’m with a group of people that I don’t know,” Horgan said.

“If I’m on a bus, if I’m on a ferry, if I’m on a plane – these are now recommendations and not guidelines, these recommendations are there for a reason.”

Mask guidance

Masks are recommended in indoor public places for all people 12 years of age and older who have not yet been fully immunized. The mask warrant order under the Emergency Programs Act was lifted on July 1 and no proof of vaccination is required.

  • You are fully vaccinated 14 days after dose 2
  • Some people may choose to continue to wear a mask after being fully immunized and this is okay.

Metro Vancouver residents share their experiences

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said people must continue to support businesses and their employees after the mask’s mandate is lifted. “I ask people to support businesses, protect their workers and live up to their demands,” she said.

While the longest state of emergency in the province’s history will be over, Henry noted that “the public health emergency will remain in place.”

Since the lifting of the order, many residents have turned to social media to share their experiences. Several of them believe that the health and safety of businesses, employees and customers are at risk because of the relaxed rules.

Many people pointed out that they had seen many people without a mask in companies. Some of them said they try to avoid approaching people who have chosen not to wear a mask.

And while several companies now say masks are “not mandatory,” residents said they have seen the majority of people with masks. Additionally, a number of companies still require customers to wear face coverings.

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