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With PMH now being classified as Yellow again. Will businesses and retailers go back to not requiring masks? Some retailers I know will keep the mandatory masks as per their national company guidelines. Looking to see which will no longer require masks.
Starting today, code is now yellow making masks not mandatory anymore but are they? Can you really go anywhere without a mask? I know a lot of businesses and restaurants are making their policy “mask only” so did anything really change?
Here is the exact wording from yesterday's media release on Prairie Mountain being changed to yellow... note specifically that masks remain strongly recommended if no longer required (except of course in many businesses and places that have mandated). From the provincial release: "Starting Friday, Sept. 18, the Prairie Mountain Health region will be lowered to the COVID-19 caution level (yellow), according to the #RestartMB Pandemic Response System. This is in response to an improved situation in the region. Masks are strongly recommended but not required and public gatherings will be limited to 50 people indoors and 100 people outdoors. Public health officials continue to monitor all the regions with increased cases closely to determine if additional restrictions are necessary. Public health officials strongly encourage all Manitobans to focus on the fundamentals to help stop the spread of COVID-19. This means staying home if you are sick, washing/sanitizing your hands, covering your cough and physically distancing when you are with people outside your household. If you cannot physically distance, wear a mask. Wearing a reusable non-medical mask does not protect the person wearing the mask, but may help protect the people around them. For a mask to be effective, it must be worn properly or it will not prevent the spread of COVID-19. Helpful guidance on wearing a mask can be found at www.gov.mb.ca/covid19/updates/prepareandprevent.html#collapse3. " Source: https://news.gov.mb.ca/news/?archive=&item=49231
In a separate post, my own thoughts: Important that people get the right message on this... specifically that the virus is still very much an ongoing concern that needs to be taken seriously in line with public health advice as per http://www.manitoba.ca/covid19/restartmb/prs/prairie_mountain/index.html Brandon and area appears to have gotten a handle on a particularly serious outbreak of Covid in August that based on accounts sounds like it may have started with one imported case and before you knew it we had more than 150 active cases. You could make the case that complacency over how little we saw the virus earlier in the summer created an ideal environment for that August outbreak and you could make the strong case that things were on the path to get that much worse if not for the measures that were put in place re smaller gatherings and mandatory masks. We need to remember the lessons from the past to make sure we stay as ahead of the virus as we can be as a community!
In the end the same virus is out there and given an optimal environment to spread will do so. We need to get used to the idea of changes in state like this when the risk level is determined to be particularly elevated and we need to continue to follow public health advice based on present state!
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