JULY 14, 2020 – As I sit here I fear for my community. I fear that our leadership is failing again by not clearly mandating the wearing of masks and not enforcing what laws and rules are in place.

That’s not a mix for success and it doesn’t make sense to move forward until we can resolve these issues.

Facts are that we still, months into a world Pandemic, have no real treatment for Covid 19.

In our community if you need hospital care you are shipped off to Ottawa which means hardship for the family and of course being alone as a patient.

We are not seeing enough people wearing masks and respecting social distance, even in Seniors Hours shopping. We are not seeing clear enforcement of the limited rules we have even.

Mr. Ford we need clear, across the board mandatory orders regarding masks. They are here to stay, but not if you are going to allow loopholes.

If someone is too sick to wear a mask they are too sick to be shopping and as we have seen countless times it only takes one infected person to create an outbreak.

While we should have compassion for those that for whatever reason “feel” they can’t wear a mask we can’t allow them to cause infections and outbreaks.

There is curbside shopping, delivery, and groups, friends and family that can assist.

As we clearly know there is no medical reason to not wear a mask or face shield of some form. None. Zero. In fact doctors say those with Asthma and COPD for example need to wear a mask more than others.

You simply cannot “ask” people to voluntarily mask up because many simply won’t. Recently I was shopping here in Cornwall and nearly half weren’t wearing masks and at least four were coughing.

It’s not up to me to play doctor, but nobody should face that risk.

Lawyers have pointed out that no store is forced to allow someone in without a mask as they have to face expensive deep cleanings and potential staff quarantines, but by not having a strong clear mandate for masks it puts pressures on stores to let unmasked people in.

That doesn’t work.

In our area we have a triple threat. We are flooded by Quebec shoppers, and the strange and weird wondrous situation of 23,000 Akwesasne residents allowed to cross border shop in the US where while not having the worst numbers of cases, have more than we do in Eastern Ontario.

And now you want us to move to stage 3?

We all want things to return to normal, but the cost of care for people in hospital is huge as I’m sure you know. The wear and tear on our health care staff would be critical as we were short staffed BEFORE Covid 19.

This writer urges your government to rethink the criteria for moving to stage three and to issue a mandatory mask order for Ontario with no loopholes. None.

We all need to do our part in fighting this Virus, but we can’t afford needless and neglectful illness and death and that is what the status quo will lead to.

Please show stronger leadership on this issue and please get stronger leadership for Public Health Offices that need it like ours does here in Cornwall & SD&G.


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