P.E.I. Premier Dennis King says he'll follow the lead of the Chief Public Health Office when it comes to any decision about mandatory face masks.
New Brunswick announced Thursday that masks will be mandatory in most indoor public spaces in that province, leaving P.E.I. as the only province in Atlantic Canada without a mandatory mask policy.
P.E.I. Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Heather Morrison strongly recommends people wear a mask in indoor locations where physical distancing isn't possible.
King said many Islanders already wear face masks in indoor places, even without a provincial policy in place. Some stores, such as Walmart and the Atlantic Superstore, have asked their customers to wear masks while inside.
If something happens where we need to close our borders, for a short time or a long time, we have demonstrated in the past that we will do that — Premier Dennis King
But the province has stopped short of making it mandatory
"We will continue to have that conversation. You know, if it's to the point where Dr. Morrison and her staff feel like there's enough evidence or enough need for [it] here, we see that P.E.I. isn't doing as well as we have been with the mask wearing, then I would take her advice on that information."
More cases in New Brunswick
New Brunswick officials announced 20 new cases of COVID-19 Saturday, bringing the province to 57 active cases.
Morrison has advised against travelling to the Moncton area over Thanksgiving. King said it's concerning to see an outbreak so close to P.E.I., and reiterated he will not hesitate to close the province's borders if it is necessary to protect Islanders.
"If something happens where we need to close our borders, for a short time or a long time, we have demonstrated in the past that we will do that and that remains how we will operate heading forward."
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