Christian Dubé covid-19 recommendations mask Christian Dubé

Off with the mask: Quebec becomes last province to lift COVID-19 masking health order

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COVID-19 pandemic hit, and on Saturday, it became the last province to allow residents to go maskless in most indoor public places.In force since July 2020, the masking rule expired at 12:01 a.m., allowing patrons of stores, bars, restaurants, gyms and shopping centres, along with students in elementary and high schools, to wear a mask only if they choose to.Masking remains mandatory, however, on public transit and in health-care facilities.

People who contract COVID-19 will have to wear a mask in public while they recover, and companies can set their own rules in the workplace.Health Minister Christian Dubé said Friday that some Quebecers will continue masking in public and their personal choice should be respected.“Personally, I think that I will continue to wear (a mask) in certain situations when I feel that I’m more comfortable,” Dubé said. “I’ll see how things evolve in the coming weeks, but I think it’s just respectful to be able to allow people to wear it.”Masking is recommended for vulnerable people, including the immunocompromised.

An association representing people with immune disorders says at-risk residents are worried about having to navigate difficult terrain.The Association des Patients Immunodeficients du Quebec says that while many people might feel society is getting back to normal, that’s not the case for everyone.Marc Griffin, a Montreal-based mental health-care worker who suffers from an autoimmune disorder, said he feels “left behind.”“There’s a large swath of us I’d say who are on pins and needles, trying to figure out how to live our lives in a maskless world.”Griffin said he will spend the coming weeks figuring out how to safely travel to doctor’s appointments.

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