As of 12:01 a.m. on Friday, March 11, 2022, face masks are no longer mandatory in most indoor settings across British Columbia.
But is everyone breathing a sigh of relief? And will many continue to don the non-medical face coverings in some or all indoor situations?
According to a poll run by V.I.A., about 42 per cent of local respondents indicated they would either continue to mask up across the board (20.67 %) or at least put on a mask in some situations (21.88 %).
Conversely, 37.50 % of poll respondents in Vancouver said they would like to burn their masks altogether with the mandate gone, while 19.71 % indicated they don't wear a mask now anyhow. (You can see the results in full below.)
While the B.C. mask mandate is no more as of March 11, some locations will still require people to wear face masks, such as in health care settings. TransLink will continue its mandatory mask requirement for customers and employees on HandyDART at this time, the transit agency indicated on March 10, noting that drivers and passengers on all other TransLink vehicles can opt to wear masks but they will no longer be required.
Some businesses and workplaces may also have a mask mandate in place, however, "most low-risk locations will now be an option and no longer a necessity," said Dr. Bonnie Henry, B.C.'s public health officer, on March 10.
As news of the mask mandate lifting hit social media, V.I.A. tracked responses by people in and around Vancouver on Twitter, and the sentiments are similarly mixed. Here's a sample of what people are saying online about the end of the indoor mask requirement in B.C.:
Sounds like some folks from other parts of B.C. are distrustful of Vancouverites:
Poll results: If B.C. drops the mask mandate in March, will you continue to mask up?
Vancouver Is Awesome polled 1140 Vancouver Is Awesome readers and asked the question: If B.C. drops the mask mandate in March, will you continue to mask up?
The poll ran from 3/9/2022 to 3/10/2022. Of the 1140 votes, we can determine that 416 are from within the community. The full results are as follows:
Results are based on an online study of adult Vancouver Is Awesome readers that are located in Vancouver. The margin of error - which measures sample variability - is +/- 2.9%, 19 times out of 20.
Vancouver Is Awesome uses a variety of techniques to capture data, detect and prevent fraudulent votes, detect and prevent robots, and filter out non-local and duplicate votes.