As Malta enters its third week of mandatory mask wearing, a popular fitness fanatic and TV presenter has suggested providing an exception for solitary walks.
As she filmed herself walking up a hill with a mask on, Claire Agius Ordway said a number of people have told her the new mask rules are discouraging them from going out for walks.
“It’s good if some people feel safer going out for walks with a mask on but I’ve received messages from people with shortness of breath who are losing heart in going out,” she said.
“Who am I to revise the law but perhaps we can think that going out for a walk in the countryside to help yourself is different from being with people? Maybe more people will be encouraged to go out for walks if they’re allowed to remove their masks without fear of getting fined.”
“Let’s try and lift people up in these times we seem to be stuck in and encourage them to walk more often, because these are the things will keep us sane. If the mask is making them lose heart and they’re not harming anyone, maybe they should remove it.”
Malta’s mandatory mask-wearing rules make exceptions for “high intensity physical activity” but Superintendent of Public Health Charmaine Gauci has insisted this only applies to jogging and cycling. Health Minister Chris Fearne has shown reluctance to allow people to remove their masks when on solitary walks, warning this could open the door to loopholes.