A group of city council candidates is rallying behind a mayoral candidate’s pledge to address rising COVID-19 statistics.
A mask bylaw will be reinstated in all interior public venues in the city, including gyms, restaurants, and bars, according to a plan proposed by mayoral candidate Jan Damery. Individuals who have been fully vaccinated would not be required to wear masks indoors.
“If the province won’t act, I will,” Damery said in a statement. “Right now, we need to secure our recovery and prevent another lockdown. That means taking decisive action to increase vaccine uptake and protect people from the fourth wave without closing businesses.”
Damery was joined outside Calgary City Hall by ward candidates Kourtney Branagan, Lori Masse, Marilyn North Peigan, Erin Waite and Courtney Walcott, who all endorsed Damery’s plan.
On Friday, outgoing Ward 12 Coun. Shane Keating joined a growing group of existing councillors calling for a special meeting of council to receive an update on COVID-19 numbers in the city and to explore further public health measures like a mask bylaw or vaccine mandate for city employees.
Outgoing Ward 7 Coun. Drug Farrell, Ward 3 councillor and mayoral candidate Jyoti Gondek, and Ward 9 incumbent Coun. Gian-Carlo Carra have all taken to social media in the past month calling for the city’s mask bylaw to be reinstated.
Ward 5 councillor and federal candidate in Calgary Skyview George Chahal, who voted to keep the city’s mask bylaw in place during the July 5 city council meeting, expressed his disagreement with the provincial response when hospitalizations and case numbers are increasing.
Chahal wrote, “Albertans deserve leaders who will fight for them, not flee when things are tough.”
The City of Calgary has 2,112 current COVID-19 cases as of Aug. 27, with a total of 2,838 active cases in the AHS Calgary zone. Only Edmonton City and the Edmonton Zone have more cases.
As of Aug. 27, 101 persons had been admitted to hospitals in the Calgary zone, with 20 of them in intensive care.
Only 65.2 percent of Calgarians have been fully vaccinated, according to AHS data.
Source_ The Canadian Press