Mandatory Mask Wearing Effective Immediately in Public Facilities

Thu, October 29, 2020

PRINCE RUPERT, B.C. –  To reduce the potential risk of exposure to COVID-19, effective immediately the City of Prince Rupert is requiring masks to be worn in all public indoor City-operated facilities. This requirement is being implemented to protect community health and safety. Please see below for details.

Face Mask Requirement

Wearing a face mask is an additional measure we can take to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19 and keep one another safe. This means that, with some exceptions, all individuals entering a City-operated building are required to wear a face mask while inside, while accessing programs/services, and conducting business or providing services while in the building. An individual’s face mask must cover the nose, mouth and chin without gapping. Face shields alone are not acceptable.

Please note that wearing a mask should be done to compliment other recommended safety measures such as physical distancing, regular hand washing, staying home when feeling unwell and all other COVID-19 health guidelines. Even while wearing a mask, these important steps should be taken, and every effort should be made to maintain a 2 meter (6 foot) distance from others, and any/all other safety protocols implemented in City-operated buildings must also still be followed.

Exemptions to the Face Mask Requirement

Those exempt from wearing a face mask while inside City-operated buildings include individuals:

  • Five years and under
  • With a sensory disability
  • With a cognitive disability
  • With a physical disability
  • With a chronic health condition that is respiratory in nature
  • Who are deaf or hard of hearing who may face increased communication challenges by wearing a mask
  • Who are unable to place or remove a face mask without assistance

It is vital that individuals are not stigmatized or judged if they are unable to wear a face mask due to a listed exemption. We ask for patience and kindness as everyone adjusts and navigates through these uncertain times. Those who are not able to wear a face mask, for medical or other reasons, are asked to maintain a safe distance for the protection of themselves and those around them.

Face Mask Optional Activities

Programs and physical activities exempt from the mandatory face mask requirement (and considered "mask optional" activities in designated spaces) may include:

  • Fitness centres and weight rooms
  • Swimming and aquatic programs
  • Ice skating
  • Indoor sports

Individuals participating in the exempt physical activities listed above are asked to wear a face mask when going to and from in the designated activity area where signs or instructions will indicate that masks are optional. Individuals are still welcome to choose to wear a face mask while participating in activities that have been designated as "mask optional." Organizations that have included face masks as part of their safe return to play plans are asked to continue in accordance with those stipulations.

Responsibilities and Compliance

Individuals should bring and wear their own face mask. Single use disposable face masks will be provided if necessary. Please make sure to dispose of used disposable face masks into a waste bin. Ensure you wash your hands using soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer before and after removing your face mask.

Individuals are expected to make good personal decisions regarding the use of face masks. Staff will be informing individuals who are not wearing a face mask that they are required to wear one. Our primary focus is on education, and staff will do what they can to find a workable solution.

The City of Prince Rupert works to provide a safe and welcoming environment for all customers and staff. All those attending City facilities are expected to behave socially responsibly, and in a way that is respectful to your fellow patrons and City staff.  We thank you in advance for your patience and cooperation.

 

MEDIA CONTACT

Veronika Stewart, Communications Manager

250 627 0976

veronika.stewart@princerupert.ca