Quebec makes wearing face masks mandatory on public transit

Jun 30 2020, 8:35 am

Premier François Legault has announced that all Quebecers using public transit must wear a face mask.

Alongside the National Director of Public Health, Dr. Horacio Arruda, and Montreal’s Public Health Director, Mylene Drouin, Legault said it’s “relatively easy to catch COVID-19 from another person who isn’t close.”

Legault said Quebecers have been following public health instructions “the most” but the gradual deconfinement has resulted in more people using public transit throughout the province.

“If we don’t want to see a contagion restart or return to lockdown in this new phase, we need to make masks mandatory on public transit,” he said in French from Montreal.

The mandated mask wearing on public transit will go into effect as of July 13 and those who do not comply with the new rules will not be allowed to ride.

Children between the ages of two and 12 are not required to wear masks, even though public health advises it. Legault says it is unsafe for toddlers under the age of two to wear them, however.

Legault says health officials are “strongly recommending” that citizens wear masks in public places besides the transit networks but stressed it’s not mandatory, adding “it could change,” if the pandemic worsens.

“Let’s be clear,” he concluded, “wearing masks is not about fear but respect. It protects other people. When we wear a mask, we’re not a scaredy-cat, we’re being cautious.”