Regional Council repeals mask by-law

Posted on Wednesday March 16, 2022

Waterloo Region – At a Special Council Meeting this evening, Regional Council repealed the mask by-law requiring face coverings in enclosed public spaces, effective March 21, 2022. The by-law has been in place since July 2020.

Face coverings are still required on public transportation vehicles, bus shelter or platform at a transit platform across the region until the Province removes this requirement under the Reopening Ontario Act, anticipated to take place on April 27, 2022. 

As of March 21, 2022, face coverings will no longer be required in the following public indoor spaces:

  • Stores and shopping malls
  • Indoor areas of restaurants and bars
  • Professional services such as counselling, personal care, funeral homes, repair and rental services
  • Lobby areas of commercial buildings
  • Enclosed common areas of multi-residential buildings
  • Hotels and motels
  • Laundromats
  • Indoor areas of fitness centres, gyms and recreational sports facilities
  • Indoor concert venues, theatres and cinemas
  • Arcades and other indoor amusement facilities
  • Museums, galleries, historic sites, etc
  • Places of worship
  • Municipal buildings
  • Inside taxis, limousines and other ride sharing vehicles


Schools, hospitals and other provincial and federal facilities were not included in the by-law.




“We are in a very different stage of the pandemic now than when the bylaw came into effect in July 2020, thanks to the collective efforts of our community and high vaccination rates. While masks are no longer required, they remain an effective way to protect ourselves, each other, and our community from serious outcomes of COVID-19. I ask that we all continue to be kind and respectful to our friends, neighbours, and businesses who choose to continue to wear a mask.”

-        Karen Redman, Regional Chair


“When the mask mandate lifts, it is important to remember that our friends and neighbours may have different comfort levels. I would ask residents to please be respectful and show kindness to anyone who chooses to continue to wear a mask. COVID-19 continues to be with us and masks are an added layer of protection when the risk is higher, such as during the winter respiratory season and if/when we have another wave.”

-        Dr. Hsiu-Li Wang, Medical Officer of Health for the Region of Waterloo




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