image.jpg

Airdrie is the latest city to require mandatory face coverings as the city's COVID-19 status moved from 'watch' to 'enhanced'.

Masks are now required in all public buildings, excluding buildings that require enrolment or a membership to access, such as a school or daycare. Face coverings are required on all public transportation, excluding instances where a screen shield or barrier are in place.

Children under the age of five are exempt, as well as people with underlying medical conditions or disabilities that affects their ability to wear a mask.  

On Aug. 17, Airdrie city council voted to pre-approve a mandatory mask bylaw if or when the city reached enhanced status.

According to the province's guidelines, enhanced status is given to communities where the risk level requires additional public health measures to control spread.

Premier Jason Kenney announced Friday that Airdrie, along with other communities, has been added to Alberta's enhanced status list.

"Regardless of whether or not you believe masks work, masks are one component of staying healthy," Airdrie mayor Peter Brown said in a statement, "Personal accountability is critical right now."

Face coverings will be mandatory until 14 days after Airdrie has been removed from the enhanced status list.

According to municipal legislation, anyone who fails to abide by the rules and wear a mask is subject to a $100 fine. Any business who fails to post proper signage about the mask requirement could be fined $200.

The city's website shows Airdrie has 130 active cases as of Nov. 3, but noted that updated numbers have not been added due to technical issues with the province's COVID-19 reporting.