Toronto to extend mask bylaw into 2022 amid fourth COVID-19 wave

Face masks seem to be emerging as an important accessory to any outfit as Canadians start to settle into ‘the new normal.’

The City of Toronto is extending its temporary mask bylaw into 2022 as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.

City council made the decision on Friday on the advice of Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health Dr. Eileen de Villa. The extension would last until the end of council’s January 2022 meeting.

In an indoor environment, transmission as a result of the Delta variant may occur quickly between an infected person and many others, especially among the unvaccinated,” the city said in a news release on Friday.

“Ensuring people are properly wearing masks or face coverings in public spaces is crucial to stopping the spread of COVID-19.”

Residents in the city are required to wear a mask in all indoor public settings, including business and common areas in multi-residential buildings.

Toronto’s mask mandate began on July 7, 2020 amid the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. Toronto City Council voted unanimously in favour of requiring masks or face coverings in all enclosed public.

“Public health evidence shows masks keep people safe and are an important way we can help each other as team Toronto continues to make vaccination progress,” Toronto Mayor John Tory said in the news release.

“Right now, while the virus is still active in communities in our city, extending the COVID-19 mask bylaws is the right thing to do. I want to thank the vast majority of people who continue to do the right thing and wear masks when they are out and about in public.”