Manitoba Daily

The mask mandate in Manitoba schools is coming to an end after nearly two years

The mask mandate in Manitoba schools is coming to an end nearly two years later.

Key Takeaways:

  • Manitobans are only a few days away from lifting the most visible public health order.
  • Johnson, like the province, is advising his children to continue wearing masks, but not requiring them to do so.

Manitobans are only a few days away from the most visible public health order being lifted.

As of Tuesday, March 15, face masks will no longer be required in most public spaces, such as schools.

Brent Johnson, a Winnipeg parent, is concerned that the change is coming a little too soon.

“At this point, I wish they had just managed to keep it in place until the end of the school year,” Johnson, who has two elementary-aged sons, said.

Also read: Officials in Manitoba have removed equipment from COVID-19 and protests at residential schools

“Things are taking a long time to taper off, as well as I don’t think it’s that difficult to keep doing what kids have been doing for 2 years at this point for the sake of overall safety of students, teachers, school staff, and their families and also the people they come into contact with.”

It’s a sentiment that Doctors Manitoba shares.

“Our advice and recommendation has remained constant: we must do everything possible to protect those around us,” said president Dr. Kristjan Thompson.

“As long as COVID is in circulation, it is a threat.” I accept that we must do everything possible to protect those around us, including wearing a mask.”

Johnson, like the province, is advising but not requiring his children to continue wearing masks.

“Of course, they’re their people,” Johnson said, “and they can do whatever they want at school.”

“My older child is in fifth grade, and I believe the dynamics are a little different there.” Because there are more complex social relationships and peer pressure, I believe it will be largely determined by what the consensus appears to be.”

The mask mandate in Manitoba schools is coming to an end nearly two years later.
The mask mandate in Manitoba schools is coming to an end nearly two years later. Image from Global News

Although peer pressure may influence some people to remove their masks, medical experts have previously stated on Global News that there are no real risks in doing so.

Dr. Scott Hadland, chief of adolescent medicine at Mass General Hospital for Children, stated, “Right now, there is no information to suggest there are any short-term or long-term harms whenever it comes to masks and kids.”

“That includes both psychological and physical harms,” says the author.

In any case, Johnson’s children will return to a school environment that is vastly different from what they’ve become accustomed to, particularly his youngest, who has spent more time than not under school COVID protocols.

“My younger one in second grade seems content to keep his mask on,” Johnson said.

“I believe he enjoys it, especially in the winter when it keeps his face warm.”

Source: Global News

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