TORONTO -- Toronto city council approved a bylaw Tuesday that makes face coverings mandatory in indoor public spaces.
Toronto’s top public health official earlier recommended that city council approve a new bylaw that will make it mandatory for residents to wear masks in all “indoor public spaces.”
The mayors and chairs of the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area municipalities wrote an open letter on Monday asking the province to issue a blanket order making masks mandatory in large municipalities but Health Minister Christine Elliott refused to do so, citing the fact that local officials already have the authority to implement the policy under the Health Protection and Promotion Act.
In her report considered by city council on Tuesday, de Villa said that requiring masks in indoor settings is “essential” to preventing the spread of COVID-19 but she cited studies suggesting that compliance will need to be as high as 80 per cent in order for it to work.
Less than 15 minutes after de Villa’s announcement on Tuesday, the mayors of Brampton, Mississauga and Caledon held their own news conference to announce their support for a similar bylaw making masks mandatory in indoor public spaces in their communities.
I'm encouraged by today’s Council decision requiring masks or face coverings in all indoor public spaces. As we continue to move forward living with #COVID19, this action will help reduce virus spread in our city together with other public health measures. https://t.co/1D2kB7z6kp— Dr. Eileen de Villa (@epdevilla) June 30, 2020