Use of masks on campus

Note: information on this page is subject to change and is current only as of this date: September 14, 2021

In accordance with the new PHO Face-Covering (COVID-19) Order, and the updated Return to Campus Public Health Guidance, masks must be worn in indoor public and post-secondary spaces on campus by anyone aged 12 and older, including students, faculty, staff and visitors. These spaces include:

  • common areas of buildings open to the public, including elevators, lobbies, hallways, stairwells, bathrooms; and also libraries, retail outlets, theatres, museums and galleries.
  • common areas of sport and fitness centres when not engaged in physical activity
  • coffee shops and restaurants, pubs and bars when not seated at a table
  • classrooms, including lecture theatres, teaching laboratories and other indoor instructional settings (e.g. art studios, shops, music and theatre facilities, etc.) Note: instructors and presenters can choose to remove their mask while instructing or presenting if they are able to maintain 2m physical distance from students and others in attendance
  • vehicles supplied or contracted by the university for the transport of students, if more than one student is present in the vehicle
  • workplace areas, including meeting rooms, shared office areas, staff kitchens and break rooms, and research labs and facilities. Note: individuals can choose to remove their mask if they are able to maintain 2m physical distance from others when seated or at a workstation.

Units and supervisors, please post this updated mask sign at entrances to unit-managed spaces.

NEW Download the classroom masking guidance.

Exemptions (full list)

  • if unable to wear a face covering because of a psychological, behavioural or health condition; or a physical, cognitive or mental impairment
  • if unable to put on or remove a face covering without the assistance of another person
  • if the face covering is removed temporarily for the purposes of identifying the person wearing it
  • while communicating with a person for whom visual cues, facial expressions, lip-reading or lip movements are essential (note: individuals may also consider the use of a transparent mask and such masks may be recommended for participation in ASL courses)
  • while delivering instruction, a lecture or presentation if there is a distance of two metres between the presenter and other persons in attendance, or the presenter is behind a barrier
  • to engage in an educational activity that cannot be performed while wearing a mask, for example while actively playing a wind instrument
  • if the student is behind a barrier separating the student from other persons, for example a divider or cubicle
  • while participating in physical activity organized by the university or at a fitness facility or sport facility operated by the university
  • while in a workplace area (e.g. meeting room, shared office area, research lab or facility) if there is a distance of two meters between individuals when seated or at a workstation, or they are separated by a barrier
  • if the person is in a room by themselves, or in a campus building or facility with no one else present
  • while actively consuming food or drink and while seated (in areas in which food/drink is permitted)

It is important to understand how to use a non-medical mask, and their limitations as a protective measure (see resources below). Note that a face shield is not a substitute for a mask as it has an opening below the mouth.