The first public display against the upcoming mandatory mask policy took place in Timmins on Monday. A group of people gathered outside the Porcupine Health Unit Offices to protest against having to wear a mask. Organizer Annabelle Laferriere says she doesn’t believe that extra measures are needed.

“The way we kept social distancing and everything else we have done has worked to flatten the curve has worked already,” she said. “I don’t see why we need to add any more since our community has been very responsible.”

Laferriere also believes the health unit has overstepped their boundaries.

“I don’t believe that it’s fair that the health unit has gone over the head of the city,” she explained. “They could have implemented a bylaw and stopped the division within our community. It’s put even more pressure on our local businesses to uphold this. People really don’t want to wear a mask. If you travel around town there are not a lot of people wearing masks so why would they implement this after the pandemic when they could have done this months ago.”

It’s not known whether or not more anti-masks protests are planned for other communities across the Health Unit’s jurisdiction.