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Local businesses to continue mask mandate amid fourth wave

Although the province has hung up the mask mandate for indoor public spaces, a new survey indicates Manitobans aren't ready to do away with masks quite yet. Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

They’re no longer mandated by the province, but for Nikki Tardi-Pachniosky, masks are here to stay.

“Since our capacity limits have gone up to 100 per cent, we’re double booking clients, you know it’s just a bit more comfortable this way,” Tardi-Pachniosky said.

The Salon Manager at Elena Hair Studio said it’s easier to require everyone to be on the same page and wear a mask than it is to give people the option.

Read more: Winnipeg School Division, Pembina Trails make masks mandatory

Tardi-Pachniosky said they know their customers best, and have been getting plenty of “thank-you’s” as a result of the requirement.

Loren Remillard, president and CEO of The Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce, echoed Tardi-Pachniosky, saying local businesses can make the best decisions for their customers.

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“Providing a mask mandate gives those customers that comfort to know that when I enter that place of business, it’s a safe and healthy place,” Remillard said.

Remillard also said he believes most local businesses will continue to mandate masks well into the fall and winter.

Read more: Manitoba hits 2nd dose vaccination milestone, 44 new COVID-19 cases reported

The CEO said businesses didn’t want to have to be forced to make the decision on their own, and would have preferred the province to keep a mask mandate in place.

“While we’re all eager to get to that post pandemic world, we’re not there yet,” Remillard said.

For many businesses owners, Remillard said their first point of action when the mandate was lifted was to talk with staff members and see how they were feeling.

Requiring masks in their businesses was “paramount” in keeping staff and while hiring more, Remillard added.

Tardi-Pachniosky isn’t sure when the salon will no longer have the requirement in place, but said staff and clients will be consulted first.

“It’s such a personal service we really want to make sure that people feel comfortable,” the manager said.

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Elsewhere in Winnipeg, all city-owned facilities and Winnipeg Transit still require masks despite current public health orders.

A spokesperson for the Mayor tells Global News while the province takes the lead on public health measures, Mayor Brian Bowman asks that businesses and individuals remain vigilant as the threat of a fourth wave remains.

 

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