Our community spirit is strong when we work as one community to keep our guard up. COVID-19 is still a public emergency and according to public health experts, it will continue to impact our community and our City services for months to come.
At a local level, we continue to follow recommendations from the Government of Canada and the Provincial Government to minimize the risk of COVID-19 transmission using the hierarchy of controls. The hierarchy suggests that non-medical mask (e.g. cloth or other materials) should be used with other health and safety measures, such as:
- Stay home if you are not feeling well.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water; if soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer;
- Avoid touching your face, mouth, nose or eyes with unwashed hands.
- Maintain a two-metre physical distance from others.
- Wear a non-medical mask (e.g. cloth or other materials) when physical distance cannot be maintained
Use of masks: Saskatoon Transit and City facilities & services
What you need to know
- Wearing non-medical mask (e.g. cloth or other materials), even if you have no symptoms, is an additional measure you may take to protect others around you, particularly in situations where the recommended physical distancing cannot be maintained, such as public transit.
- Saskatoon Transit is requiring all riders to wear a non-medical mask as of September 1, 2020. Requiring masks allows Transit to safely operate full-seated buses and meet demand on all fixed route and Access Transit buses.
- The use of a non-medical mask is recommended, but not required, when accessing indoor City-operated facilities and services.
- The health, safety, and well-being of our employees and maintaining essential services to residents are our top priorities. We will continue to monitor this situation and our approach with health officials.
- If at any point in the future the Province provides direction related to mask use by the public the City would follow the Provincial lead.
Saskatoon Transit: Staying safe on public transit
Proper Use and Care – Cloth Mask
Proper Use and Care - Disposable mask
Government of Canada video: How to wear a non-medical mask or face covering properly
Government of Canada: Non-medical masks and face coverings: Sew and no-sew instructions
How this affects you
- All Saskatoon Transit riders will need to wear a mask to ride beginning September 1, 2020.
- Non-medical masks will be available on buses for those who do not have one from Sept 1 to 14, 2020, or until supplies last.
- By following the recommended safety precautions, and wearing a mask indoors, we can continue to stop the spread of COVID-19 in our community and protect the health of our family, friends and neighbours.
- When you wear a mask, you are helping to protect other people. When other people wear a mask, they are helping to protect you.
- Don’t judge others for not wearing a mask. Some people may not be able to wear a mask. Those who masks are not recommended for include:
- People who suffer from an underlying medical condition or disability which inhibits the ability to wear a face covering;
- or anyone providing assistance to a person with an underlying medical condition or disability where the use of a nonmedical face mask would hinder the provision of assistance;
- person unable to place or remove a mask or face covering without assistance;
- children under the age of 2 years of age; and
- first responders in an emergency situation
- Proof is not required if someone has an exception. City employees will not deny services as not everyone is required to wear a face covering.
Note: The City is focusing on education to assist with residents complying with the requirement of a non-medical face mask on Saskatoon Transit.
Protect Yourself and Others - Prevent the Spread of COVID-19
COVID-19 most commonly spreads from an infected person to another person through the following.
- Close contact: Breathing in someone's respiratory droplets after they cough, sneeze, laugh or sing.
- Contaminated surfaces: Touching something with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose or eyes with unwashed hands.
- Common greetings: Handshakes, hugs or kisses.
As a respiratory illness, the best method to protect yourself against COVID-19 is to practice everyday preventive actions, including:
- When coughing or sneezing:
- cough or sneeze into a tissue or the bend of your arm, not your hand
- throw away tissues you have used as soon as possible in a lined waste basket and wash your hands afterwards
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds and dry them well; if soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
- Maintain safe food practices and avoid sharing cups, glasses, dishes or cutlery, and ensure they are thoroughly washed with warm water and soap after each use
- Clean high-touch surfaces and objects frequently with regular household cleaners or diluted bleach (one part bleach to nine parts water), such as toys, toilets, phones, electronics, door handles, bedside tables, television remotes
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick
- Avoid unnecessary travel to affected areas
- Practice healthy habits such as eating well, exercising and getting enough rest to help support your immune system
It is important to keep up to date with the current risk level and restrictions under the current Public Health Order in Saskatchewan.
Together, we can slow the spread of COVID-19 by making a conscious effort to keep a physical distance between each other. Social distancing, also called physical distancing, is proven to be one of the most effective ways to reduce the spread of illness during an outbreak. This means making changes in your everyday routines to minimize close contact with others, including:
- Avoid crowded places and non-essential gatherings
- Avoid common greetings, such as handshakes
- Limit contact with people at higher risk like older adults and those in poor health
- Keep a distance of at least two metres from others
Government of Canada: Going out: Personal and social activities during the COVID-19 pandemic
Use of Non-Medical Masks
The Public Health Agency of Canada is now recommending wearing a non-medical mask in the community even if you have no symptoms, as an additional measure to protect others around you. Non-medical masks can play an important role in situations and community settings where physical distancing is not possible or is unpredictable (such as on public transit or in grocery stores) and when the local epidemiology and rate of community transmission warrant it.
Masks alone won't prevent the spread of COVID-19. You must consistently and strictly adhere to good hygiene and public health measures, including core personal practices like frequent hand washing and physical distancing.
Public Shared Surfaces
In keeping with public health guidelines, residents should avoid using their hands to touch shared surfaces in the public like handrails, garbage cans, benches and at any pedestrian crossings that still require push button activation. Always wash your hands as soon as you return home or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water aren’t available.
If you have questions related to COVID-19, please visit: