City of Regina deferring to province on mandatory masks: Mayor
REGINA -- The Mayor of Regina is concerned about the rising number of COVID-19 cases in the city, but said he is deferring to the provincial government on making masks mandatory.
"It’s important for the public to refocus their attention on keeping themselves safe, their families, their coworkers safe and everyone else safe," Michael Fougere, the Mayor of Regina, said on Tuesday.
Regina dropped to zero active cases on Sept. 5, but has since seen its active case count increase to 24 in the past two weeks.
During a previous rise in cases last month, City Council considered a mandatory mask bylaw, but instead decided to table to the motion as case numbers declined.
The Mayor said the city will wait for direction from the province on masks.
“It’s important that we don’t have a patchwork of rules and regulations," Fougere said. "When you come to Regina you must wear a mask, but when you are somewhere else you don’t have to do that, that can be confusing to the public as well and we want to avoid confusion and have a uniform process."
The Provincial Government is not considering making masks mandatory at this time, instead recommending them when physical distancing can’t be maintained.
"You’re not required to wear a mask, but if you are unable to keep that distance, you should have a mask available and you should be very quick to put that on to protect not only yourself, but to protect those around," Saskatchewan Premier Scott Moe said.
"It’s important that the individuals understand that wearing a mask is not so much about your protection, it’s for someone else’s protection," Fougere added. "It’s being altruistic and thinking of other people around you."
Fougere is concerned about community transmission in the city and asks residents to remain vigilant on the public health guidelines, noting 11 city bus drivers are currently self-monitoring after a passenger was determined to be positive for COVID-19 last week.