P.E.I. lifts mask requirements for public transit

Effectively immediately, masks to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 are no longer required on P.E.I. transit.

Masks still recommended in public areas

Buses were one of the last places on P.E.I. where wearing a mask was still required. (Pat Martel/CBC)

Effectively immediately, masks to help prevent the spread of COVID-19  are no longer required on P.E.I. transit.

"It is very encouraging to see the daily number of COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and institutional outbreaks continuing to decline on Prince Edward Island," said Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Heather Morrison in a news release Friday morning.

"We continue to recommend masks in public places across Prince Edward Island."

The mask mandate for most public places was lifted on May 6, and in schools on May 24. It remains in place for high-risk settings such as hospitals and long-term and community-care homes.

T3 Transit owner Mike Cassidy said he's happy to see the mandate being lifted for buses because it means transit riders can now follow the same protocols they do anywhere else.

"What we were hearing was, 'We're in a public spot, we're in a grocery store, we're in a restaurant where masks are recommended, not mandatory. Yet we step on a bus and is mandatory,'" he said. 

"We had customers that were looking at one another, some wearing mask, some not. And there was just a little bit of possible tension, we felt."

The province is encouraging people to get their vaccine boosters.

As of May 22 about 95 per cent of Islanders were fully vaccinated. People over the age of 60 are now recommended to get a second vaccine booster.