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UBC extends mask mandate into summer, citing sixth COVID wave

University one of only to require masks beyond end of provincial health orders
The UBC sign is pictured at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Apr. 23, 2019. The university is extending its mask mandate until the end of June 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

More than a month after B.C. announced the end of the provincial mask mandate, the University of British Columbia is once again extending its.

In a statement Wednesday (April 20), the university said the rise of new Omicron variants and the simple science behind the use of masks have convinced it to continue mandating masks past its original April 30 cutoff, until the end of June.

The university said masks are an easy way to ensure an extra layer of protection for its entire community, and the most vulnerable people in it.

It noted that there are signs of new Omicron variants appearing and case numbers rising.

B.C. is no longer reporting daily COVID-19 case numbers, but its latest weekly report from April 14 indicated that hospitalizations due to the virus were up.

READ ALSO: B.C. COVID hospitalizations up as province releases weekly report

READ ALSO: End of vaccine card in B.C. too soon as BA.2 variant spreads: doctor

UBC said it will continue to monitor the situation and will adjust its approach if necessary. Masks are required in all indoor public spaces on both its Vancouver and Okanagan campuses.

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About the Author: Jane Skrypnek

I'm a provincial reporter for Black Press Media after starting as a community reporter in Greater Victoria.
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