Masks now mandatory in Renfrew County

Starting today (July 14), face masks or coverings will be mandatory in enclosed spaces in Renfrew County.

The Renfrew County and District Health Unit (RCDHU) says an enclosed public space is any indoor public space accessed by the public.

This includes churches, libraries, hair salons, barber shops, shopping malls, restaurants, cafes, waiting rooms, hospitals, museums, recreation facilities, community centres, theatres, gyms, common areas in hotels/motels, elevators, laundry rooms, municipal public spaces and more.

Schools, childcare, day camps, offices not open to the public (where clients receive services by appointment only) and spaces subject to provincial or local public health guidance.

Exceptions will be made for children under two (or children under five who refuse to wear a facemask), those with difficulty breathing, medical conditions that prevent them from wearing a mask, or if you’re unable to remove the mask without help.

The health unit says nobody will be required to provide proof of any of the exemptions.

Enclosed Public Spaces include the following, but are not limited to:

  • restaurants, cafés, cafeterias, banquet halls;
  • retail establishments and shopping malls;
  • churches, mosques, synagogues, temples, or other places of worship;
  • libraries, museums, art galleries, recreational facilities, bingo halls, community centres and halls, cinemas, theatres, concert venues, special event venues, convention centers, or other similar entertainment, cultural, or leisure facilities;
  • sports facilities, sports clubs, gyms, yoga studios, dance studios, and stadiums;
  • common areas of hotels, motels, or short-term rental premises such as lobbies, elevators, meeting rooms, rest rooms, laundry rooms, gyms, and kitchens;
  • public and private transportation including taxis and rideshare services;
  • common areas of premises under the control of a regulated health professional under the Regulated Health Professions Act, 1991, S.O. 1991, c. 18, as amended, such as waiting rooms;
  • common areas of hospitals and independent health facilities such as lobbies, food courts and retail establishments;
  • spas, hair salons, barbers, nail salons, and other personal service settings that are subject to health and safety protocols provided by the Province of Ontario during the provincial emergency;
  • and municipal public spaces.

The following are not considered an Enclosed Public Spaces:

  • Spaces subject to provincial and/or local public health guidance
  • Schools under the Education Act, R.S.O. 1990, c. E.2, as amended
  • Childcare centres and providers governed by the Child Care and Early Years Act
  • Day camps
  • Offices not open to the public including professional offices where clients receive services by appointment only (e.g. lawyer, accountant).

Get more information on the RCDHU’s website.