Queen’s University to drop mandatory masking requirement on June 1st

Queen’s University has announced that they are suspending its mandatory masking requirement effective June 1st. The decision comes days after St. Lawrence College announced that they would no longer require masks to be worn on campus or in facilities, with some exceptions.

“This decision is based on the current state of the pandemic, in which COVID-19 cases and hospital capacity in our region are stable, and masks are no longer required in most public settings,” wrote Queen’s on its Safe Return website on Friday.

The university emphasized that some staff, faculty, students, and visitors “may choose to continue to wear masks on campus,” and urged that respect be given to those individuals.

There will be some exceptions to the new policy. “[Queen’s] will continue to have requirements on masking for certain activities and roles, such as those in health clinics, hospitals, some laboratories, and some organizations where students complete their placements, may have different requirements for masking.” The university is asking students to contact their respective departments for more details.

Some institutions in the region are continuing to enforce a masking requirement. At the Royal Military College of Canada, mask mandates are still in force, however the Federal Government recently announced that federal government workers are no longer required to wear masks while sitting at desks and in meetings when physical distancing is in place.

Queen’s University says that it will “consult with public health experts to review the need to reinstate the mask mandate, along with other preparations for the fall, in late summer. We will communicate any further updates to the Queen’s community as information becomes available.”

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