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COVID-19: Here’s how Toronto’s mask rules are changing as more Ontario requirements lift

Click to play video: 'Remaining mask mandates for Ontario set to expire this weekend'
Remaining mask mandates for Ontario set to expire this weekend
WATCH ABOVE: Remaining mask mandates in the province for transit, long-term care homes and hospitals are set to be removed Saturday. Brittany Rosen has reaction from medical experts – Jun 7, 2022

The City of Toronto is making some changes to its COVID-19 masking requirements after the provincial government announced it would be lifting most remaining mask mandates on Saturday.

The province’s chief medical officer of health issued a statement Wednesday saying most of Ontario’s existing masking mandates will be lifted, but masks will still be required in long-term care and retirement homes.

Read more: Most remaining Ontario COVID mask mandates lifting on Saturday

In a press release, the City of Toronto said, based on public health advice, masks will “continued to be required in some City of Toronto congregate settings to protect the health and safety of residents and staff.”

According to the city, masks will continue to be required in long-term care homes and retirement homes, and will be recommended in congregate living settings like shelters or group homes.

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The city said on June 11, the provincial government will issue guidance on when masks should be worn in hospitals and other care settings.

Here’s a closer look at some other changes in the city:

City long-term care homes

According to the release, masking, screening and testing requirements will continue in “all city directly-operated long-term care homes at this time.”

Transit

The city said the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) is “strongly recommending” customers continue to wear masks on its vehicles and in stations.

What’s more, the city said masks will remain mandatory for both employees and customers using TTC’s Wheel-Trans service.

The city said once the mask mandate expires later this week, masks will be “optional” on Go Transit and UP Express.

Read more: Remaining Ontario COVID-19 mask mandates set to expire this week

Shelters

The release said the city has also decided to continue mandatory masking at shelters, 24-hour respite and 24-hour women’s drop-in sites.

“All screening, testing and infection prevention and control measures also continue to be maintained in shelter settings,” the release said.

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City of Toronto Children’s Services

According to the release, the city’s Children’s Services division is “continuing to work” with occupational health and safety to determine any updates.

The city said at this time, masks will continue to be worn by child care staff, in indoor settings, when they are interacting with children, their families and other staff members.

City facilities

The city said as of March 21, following the province’s move to remove mandatory masking in some settings, masks are not required for visitors to most of the city’s facilities.

However, Toronto said “anyone choosing to wear a mask will be supported in their choice.”

The city said Toronto Public Health “encourages residents to stay up to date” with their COVID-19 shots, including booster doses for “best protection against serious illness linked to this virus.”

“As COVID-19 continues to circulate in the community, residents are encouraged to practice public health measures including getting vaccinated, and are strongly encouraged to wear a high-quality, well-fitting mask, especially indoors and based on the setting and situation, and staying home if feeling unwell,” the release read.

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