Do we really need government to tell us to mask up?

Do we really need government to tell us to mask up?

By Shachi Kurl, President

Apparently, all that 54 per cent of Canadians want for Christmas is to be told they must wear masks again.

OK, I jest. It’s not all they want. There are other stocking stuffers on the list, such as Matthew Perry’s biography and reusable press-on nails. (This in no way resembles my own desires; I’ve already pre-ordered Prince Harry’s book and my nails are 100 per cent real).

Anyway, back to masks, and the fascinating case studies we see at this end of 2022 in the national embrace of the nanny state and the slow nature of behaviour change.

Not unlike a visit from the ghosts of Christmas past, many public health officials, doctors, nurses’ unions and others across the country are calling for their respective provincial governments to restore dictates requiring the wearing of masks in public.

It is understandable, against the backdrop of waves of recent viral illnesses, especially in children, some of it related to COVID, some of it not. It’s hard to know, when provincial health ministries neither track nor report actual coronavirus cases in real time anymore. Either way, people are suffering.

It’s our response to this call that’s particularly notable. While seasonal hygiene precautions, such as frequent hand-washing and ensuring one’s flu shots are up-to-date predate the pandemic, public encouragement and requirement for masks was definitely a post-2020 pandemic thing. And thus it remains in the Canadian psyche.

Read more from the article in the Ottawa Citizen here.

Image – Jacek Pobłocki/Unsplash


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