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Danielle Smith's victory speech after her majority election winCTV News/YouTube

CALGARY, Alberta (LifeSiteNews) — Alberta Premier Danielle Smith has announced that she is committed to not bringing back “province-wide mask mandates,” after the province’s health system re-introduces mandatory masking in some facilities.  

On October 11, Alberta Health Services (AHS) mandated masks in acute care facilities; however, Smith declared that while she respects AHS’s autonomy to make the decision, she will not allow anyone to be denied health care.   

“I believe that if Albertans want to wear a mask, they should. AHS has announced their decision to implement a new masking protocol in AHS acute care facilities,” Smith told The Epoch Times. 

“We recognize that AHS currently has the autonomy to make this decision,” she continued. “It is my expectation that no Albertan will be denied access to health care.” 

She also declared that she is dedicated to ensuring that “province-wide mask mandates” do not return.  

According to AHS’s “Use of Masks to Prevent Transmission of COVID-19 Directive,” zone executive leadership and site leadership of acute care centers are given the autonomy to determine mask mandates for AHS staff, doctors, midwives, students, volunteers, and workers in hospital laboratories. 

AHS further states that “enhanced measures” could be put in place which would mandate masks for patients, visitors, family members, and designated support persons in emergency departments in acute care facilities and hospitals.  

The mask mandate also applies to workers, family, support persons, and visitors when the Medical Officer of Health enforces masking during a COVID outbreak, by staff with COVID symptoms or a positive COVID test, or in contact with a “severely immunocompromised individual.”  

AHS’s decision to reinstate masking comes as the province removed mask mandates just four months earlier, in June. Alberta, Saskatchewan, and Manitoba are currently the only provinces in Canada that do not mandate COVID shots for healthcare workers. 

Alberta’s decision comes on the heels of several Ontario hospitals who reintroduced masking in September.   

The mask mandate came after weeks of mainstream media publishing stories alleging that COVID is returning this fall. In August, the government-funded Canadian Broadcasting Cooperation (CBC) published 18 COVID-related stories in just two days.    

Many Canadians have responded, warning that the hospital-only mandates will lead to masks and lockdowns returning in full force before year’s end.    

The mask mandate is being imposed despite overwhelming evidence that masks are not effective in preventing the spread of COVID and can cause a sundry of health issues, as LifeSiteNews has reported.   

Among that evidence is the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention’s (CDC) September 2020 admission that masks cannot be counted on to keep out COVID when spending 15 minutes or longer within six feet of someone, and a May 2020 study published by the peer-reviewed CDC journal Emerging Infectious Diseases that “did not find evidence that surgical-type face masks are effective in reducing laboratory-confirmed influenza transmission, either when worn by infected persons (source control) or by persons in the general community to reduce their susceptibility.”    

In May 2021, another study found that, though mandates were largely followed, usage did not yield the expected benefits. “Mask mandates and use (were) not associated with lower SARS-CoV-2 spread among U.S. states” from March 2020 to March 2021. In fact, the researchers found the results to be a net negative, with masks increasing “dehydration … headaches and sweating and decreas[ing] cognitive precision,” and interfering with communication, as well as impairing social learning among children.   

More than 170 studies have found that masks have been ineffective at stopping COVID and have instead been harmful, especially to children.