Letters

Why is there no penalty for those wearing masks improperly?

Dear Editor,

I have found that avoiding the ill-contrived rhetorical drivel of politicians has positive benefits on blood pressure and quality of sleep.

Despite my recent efforts to completely avoid what the government is now doing during this pandemic, someone presented me with a copy of the recent Emergency Powers (COVID-19 Pandemic) (No 6) Order 2020.

The penalties for various ‘offences’ was interesting, but it was Section 53 (failure to enforce requirements) that caught my eye.

It states the penalities for any owner, manager or operator of a business who permits entry of a person not wearing a mask or fails to ensure that individuals within the business wear masks and comply with physical distancing commits an offense and is liable to a fine of $500 on first conviction, $1,000 on second conviction and $5,000 on third conviction.

There are any number of points that come out of this order, but what I find interesting is that I suspect the premise of this order is based on current knowledge that the virus that is the cause of this pandemic is believed to be spread primarily by an airborne route.

Why then is there no penalty for those wearing masks improperly?

It seems probable to me that when a person wears a loosely fitting mask below the nose and sometimes even down to the lips, that person equally as likely, if infected, can spread the virus as a person wearing no mask at all.

This means that one can wear a mask improperly while putting others at the same risk as a person wearing no mask and not be penalized.

In addition, if this virus is truly airborne and if early reports that this virus can remain suspended in the air of an enclosed room for up to three hours are true, the question becomes what is a safe social distance indoors for an airborne virus?

In other words, what is the point of standing six feet away from someone within an air conditioned business when virus may be in the air from patrons hours before while you are wearing an improper mask?

It would be revolutionary if some thought actually went into the crafting of the “orders” some love to give.

What about the potential spread of COVID-19 by handling money?

But I digress, it’s time to go back to a life of lower blood pressure and restful sleep!

JB

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