It's been just over two weeks since face masks and coverings became mandatory in all indoor public spaces in Toronto, meaning they are now required for everything from a simple convenience store run, to a visit to the mall, and yet, the City's mask bylaw still doesn't apply to condo buildings.
And yet, condo buildings still remain within a grey area in the bylaw, which has led some Toronto property management companies to enforce their own face mask policies, or to at least encourage residents and guests to wear them while in common indoor spaces.
"From that day forward, while condos were still omitted, we thought it was prudent for our clients to send out their own policies to encourage that face masks and coverings should be worn in all condo common areas," explained Klopot.
Klopot said that within a week of the initial mask bylaw announcement being made, three-quarters of The Forest Hill Group's clients have made wearing masks inside condo building common areas mandatory.
This comes as Mayor John Tory announced that he has since called on the Greater Toronto Apartment Association, which represents 240 property management companies that own and operate more than 160,000 units in the region, to enforce mandatory mask rules in the common areas of their rental residential buildings.
“I am hopeful that the association of apartment owners will strongly encourage its members to adopt a similar policy requiring face coverings in common areas, such as the lobbies, the laundry rooms and the elevators of residential buildings,” Tory said during the press conference.
“I believe implementing these rules in buildings will help residents protect each other from the spread of COVID-19, especially when you take into account the number of Torontonians who live in residential apartment buildings,” said Tory.
Klopot said that while he thinks Mayor Tory is doing the right thing, he's glad he didn't wait to take action.
"Especially with the existing elevator rules that limit the number of people allowed inside, there is already such a build-up of residents and guests in our building lobbies waiting to use the elevators. With so many people going in and out of the elevators, the masks are important more than ever," added Klopot.
Mayor Tory has also come out and said that in the condominium building he lives in Yorkville, a policy has already been implemented and the building uses city signage to remind tenants.
“People follow these rules because they are good citizens and we are all in this together.”
Because of this, it might not be long until we see all condo and apartment buildings start to enforce their own policies, which is why it simply makes sense to carry a mask on you at all times, adding it to your checklist of things to bring with you before stepping out the door.