Why are the anti-maskers gaining traction in Burlington?

SwP thumbnail graphicBy Pepper Parr

January 11th, 2021



Why is the refusing to wear masks gaining traction in the city?

Fortino Appleby

Is there a policy at Fortinos that masks are not required by all customers

A report today came in that a small group of anti-maskers entered the Appleby Line Fortinos location.

People, not staff, asked them to put on masks or leave.

The police were called – not certain at this point who called them.

The manager was brought into the concern and he is reported to have said that those not wearing masks could and would be served.

Tamp coffee window

The coffee is good – the ambience used to be funky but pleasant in its own way.

Another report has been received about the Tamp Coffee Shop (best Espresso in town) where they are said to be very loose about masks and due to that a number of anti-maskers have chosen that as a destination.

Tamp screen shot

Not the kind of social message that you grow a business on.

The reports we get are from people we know; people who are reliable and trusted.

All this when the Health people report that there were more than 4000 new infections. The Premier tells us that the modelling data is scary and that he will reveal that data soon.

People who don’t like the need to have to wear masks can read the tea leaves – you can get away with not wearing a mask.
Big shots fly south – they don’t get hammered. All the political buzz has the now fired Minister of Finance showing up in Cabinet again in a different portfolio – he’s ’described as a very smart guy.

They seem to think that they can take a pass on the rules – and should they be infected they are young and will probably not become all that ill.

However, there are 4250 people in the province who are now infected and just under 100 who died.

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12 comments to Why are the anti-maskers gaining traction in Burlington?

  • Lisa Cooper

    I’ll wear a mask but hey they don’t work. Unless you are wearing an N95 and they are proven to let a miniscule amount of virus in, what would a regular mask do? Nothing. It’s propaganda.

    • perryb

      you seem to have found some information that others don’t have, but so be it. Get yourself an N95 and believe instead that your mask will protect everyone else.

  • Steve

    What constitutes a very small group?

  • g.fraser

    Anti-maskers who state they are Medically Except should have to show a validate Province Medical Exemption card that has the Physician’s name who has exempted them and a stamp from the Provincial Minster of Health.

    Seems simple and no one should question this on either side. No disclosure of their medical issues. Just a Province produced card, something like a credit card, etc.

    Be respectful & stay a safe distance from individuals who cannot wear a mask due to a medical reason.


  • Marnie Hill

    Tamp has lost my business after being the best coffee in town. I witnessed the mask less customers and baristas.

  • Carol Gottlob

    Ok, here for what it’s worth, is my take on masks; think of your mask as a condom… yeah I know, not sexy, not always comfortable, but if you don’t wear one, those invisible sperm will make their way to where they have to go, and someone is likely to get pregnant. If you do wear one, there is a 97.7% chance those invisible sperm will have nowhere to go, and pregnancy will have been averted. Now let’s say the condom breaks – it happens – but at least you did the best you could, and after all, isn’t that what’s simply being asked of each of us? I think that’s the way masks are intended to work.

  • Maggie Anne Steiss

    First let me address the Tripadvisor review of Tamp of which I have looked up the entire review. The customer should have minded her own business regarding another customer not wearing a mask. While the maskless customer may have been a bit overzealous in declaring her exemption, for the first customer to continue to pursue the matter is just plain wrong. It is not her place. To ask again if she had a mask when she just told you she had an exemption is ridiculous and could even be seen as harassment.
    Now to the situation at Fortino’s I am somewhat familiar with this situation and you do not have your facts straight. Fortino’s will let you in without a mask but only if you wear a shield. If you declare that you cannot wear either they will refuse you entry. I have run into this at the Stoney Creek location. I doubt very much that it was “people” and not staff who asked about the mask. Other customers would have no authority to enforce store policy. It was definitely staff who turned me away in Stoney Creek after the stores new policy went into effect at the beginning of December. A policy that is a direct violation of the by-law and the human rights act. I believe the person organizing the shopping expedition had already written the store manager about their discriminatory policy. The shopping trip and the time were posted on Facebook. The organizer was given a trespass notice. That would suggest the store was prepared for them. That was the excuse for the police being involved. This is a tactic that is being used to circumvent the mask exemption part of the by-law although it is not legal. If a business has a license and is open to the public they must serve all of the public without discrimination.

  • Penny Hersh

    There are other food businesses in Burlington that are not following the rules as well. I have chosen not to go to them. Many think that simply putting up a plastic sheet in front of the serving line makes them exempt from wearing masks. I stopped going to a pharmacy for the very same reason.

    Longo’s allows their employees to wear shields only, no mask. I sent an email to the head office informing them that in Burlington it was mandatory to wear a mask, that a shield alone was not good enough. I got an email back telling me that if I didn’t feel comfortable shopping in their store then I should go elsewhere. SO I DID. I don’t shop in any Longo’s or stores associated with them. But where is our by-law officer? Should this not be corrected?

    I guess the only way to change the way people think is to close all restaurants, coffee shops etc. No curb side pickup. Harsh – yes, but with people not following the rules of wearing masks, social distancing and not staying home with only the people living in their homes this might be the only way to stop the spread of the virus.

    I told my husband last March that if we have to depend on people doing the right thing we are in big trouble. Unfortunately this has proven to be true.

  • Hans Jacobs

    Stores that don’t enforce the mask rules will not get my business and I appreciate seeing them named by the Gazette so that I can avoid infection.
    It is intuitively obvious that anything – i.e., mask or face shield – that reduces the air flow between/among people will reduce the inhaled virus dose from a carrier and therefore the probable seriousness of any resulting infection.

  • Robert Missen

    I had heard that there was an anti-mask protest at my local Fortinos last week but had not discerned any details. I thought they were protesting outside. If, as you say, the manager claimed that people without masks will be served there, I will be taking my business elsewhere. I have been shopping there regularly since the onset of the pandemic, and been gratified to see that patrons and staff have been uniformly complicit in observing the COVID protocols.

    I have had family and friends that have succumbed to COVID. No fatalities, mercifully, but serious and lengthy illnesses and terrible side effects. Perhaps time for a socially distanced pro-mask walk?

  • Alide Camilleri

    These anti-maskers, who claim that wearing masks will make them sick, have they ever considered that doctors and nurses wear masks without getting sick. Surgeons spent countless hours wearing a mask during lengthy operations without becoming ill. These anti-maskers have fallen prey to the kind of rhetoric from south of the border by Trumpists. Don’t they realize they are total idiots?