Mayor Jim Watson has some choice words for any Ottawans that are still not wearing a mask in indoor spaces. Taking to Twitter, he called out those in grocery stores without a face covering, saying “We’re not asking you to climb Mount Everest.” This comes just one day after masks became mandatory in Ottawa.

If you’re not wearing a mask in an Ottawa grocery store, prepare to face the wrath of Mayor Jim Watson!

In a tweet on July 8, just one day after masks were made mandatory in public spaces, Mayor Watson had a strong message for those still refusing to wear a face covering.

“Just finished grocery shopping and everyone in store but two were wearing masks,” he began.

Calling on those who aren’t wearing masks in Ottawa, he stated, “please think of others.”

“We’re not asking you to climb Mount Everest - we’re asking you to put on a mask that help save lives!”

On July 7, the city made masks mandatory in all indoor public spaces, including malls, grocery stores, retail stores and restaurants.

For now, the new policy is only being enforced in "good faith."


While the response to Watson’s tweet was generally supportive, some people pointed out that those without masks could have health problems.

Per the City’s new rule, those with breathing problems or cognitive difficulties are not required to wear a mask. Children under the age of two are also exempt.

One person replied to say, “Did you ask those two people not wearing masks if they had any conditions which restricted them from wearing one? People makings assumptions is causing some serious issues in this city.”

Another concern that has already arisen from the mandatory mask rule is that staff could be harassed for attempting to enforce the policy.

Just hours after the rule came into effect, Ottawa Public Health urged locals to direct their criticism and complaints to the health agency, rather than to store employees or cashiers.

“We understand some of you are upset, but … like masks, civility & respect are needed in public places,” they wrote.

According to health officials, covering your nose and mouth is an effective way to reduce the risk of transmitting COVID-19, particularly if you have the disease but you're asymptomatic. 

*This article's cover image is for illustrative purposes only.

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