Next time you head out, don’t forget a face covering. On Tuesday, multiple mayors in the Toronto area announced the move to make face masks mandatory in the GTA. If approved, residents will be required to cover their faces while out in public spaces.
The mayors of Mississauga, Brampton and Caledon spoke at a press conference at 9 a.m. on Tuesday to outline the new rules.
The move comes after it was announced that Peel Public Health advised that face coverings should become mandatory.
"Properly worn, non-medical masks should become as indispensable to your outings as your wallet or your keys,” stated Dr. Loh, the Medical Officer of Health for Peel.
Brampton Mayor Patrick Brown stated that within a week, mandatory face coverings will be the new standard across the city.
The mayor of Mississauga, Bonnie Crombie, made a similar announcement, stating that "they are calling for mandatory masks in all indoor public spaces."
However, Crombie stated that, at the moment, they aren't looking to create a new bylaw. Instead, she hopes that people will follow these new guidelines willingly.
John Tory also announced on Tuesday that the City of Toronto would be looking at the new safety precaution.
The vote to make masks mandatory across Toronto will take place today, and would come into effect on July 7 if approved.
"It may be uncomfortable ... but our doctor says that it works," Tory stated in a conference.
The move comes after the mayors of the GTHA put out a joint statement on Monday about the matter, asking the province to make it required for larger municipalities in Ontario to have people wear the face coverings in public.
The open letter says that "the Mayors and Chairs unanimously agreed to request the Government of Ontario to implement a mandatory face covering measure for large municipalities."
"We are at a critical time in the fight against COVID-19. We must do everything we can to avoid flare-ups of the virus in our communities," it said.
However, Health Minister Christine Elliott decided not to do so, CTV reports.
She reasoned that local municipalities should have the authority on whether or not to implement the rule under the Health Protection and Promotion Act.
Now, it seems that these local municipalities are doing just that.