Face Coverings Now Officially Recommended by the Province

Premier Ford says he won't hesitate to scale back reopening the economy if the numbers trend in the wrong direction and is officially recommending everyone to wear masks or face coverings, where physical distancing is a challenge. 

ONTARIO - The Province of Ontario is officially recommending everyone to wear masks or face coverings, where physical distancing is a challenge. 

Face covering should be worn while taking public transit, returning to work or going out shopping. To assist the public, the Ministry of Health today released specific recommendations on how to choose, wear and care for appropriate face coverings used in public where physical distancing is not possible, along with additional safety measures for provincial transit agencies.

Premier Doug Ford says he won't hesitate to scale back reopening the economy if the numbers do not trend the way we want them to.

"I am fully prepared to take every action necessary, if we see things going in the wrong direction, we will be fully prepared, we won't hesitate to roll things back if necessary, and I'm hopeful we won't go there, but we need to be ready for all possible scenarios, that is why it is more important than ever that we stay vigilant."

Ford says he understands everyone is pining to visit loved ones. 

"I know that everyone is asking, when can we see our family, when can we see our friends, when can social gatherings begin again. The Chief Medical Officer has been very clear and the guidance on social gatherings remains the same, we can't have more than five people from outside your household right now. We need to use common sense, whether it is family visiting relatives or friends by car or sitting outside on a driveway, 2 metres apart from each other. I can understand if someone wants to drop off groceries, throw a ball around with a friend or help an older parent with chores around the house, and I can't stress this enough, the best line of defence to stop this deadly virus is to stay 2 metres apart, because this virus can only spread as far as we allow it." 

In order to assist people and reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19, the Ministry of Health released the following face covering recommendations:

- Wear your face covering safely and snugly to cover your nose and mouth, without any gaps. Ensure your face covering is made of at least two layers of tightly woven material and can be cleaned multiple times without losing its shape;

- Medical masks, such as surgical and N95 masks, should be reserved for use by health care workers, those providing direct care, first responders and individuals who are ill and must leave their home for essential reasons such as seeking medical care, picking up medication or groceries;

- Face coverings should not be placed on or used by children under the age of two; anyone who has trouble breathing; and anyone who is unable to remove it without assistance.

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