Dr. Mackie said people supporting anti-health measures rally are 'rooting for COVID'

London’s medical officer of health has a clear message for people planning to participate in the anti-health measures rally scheduled for London Ont. this weekend — they’re choosing COVID-19 over the health of the community.

The self-titled “Lawful Freedom Rally” is happening this Sunday at Victoria Park in London at 1 p.m.

The protest is against mandatory health restrictions put in place to curb the spread of the coronavirus, like gathering limits and mandatory mask-wearing. It will feature people who have been outspoken against mask-wearing and some that advocate against vaccines.

“Masks are very well established as an important control measure for reducing the spread of COVID-19,” Dr. Chris Mackie told reporters Thursday.

“No one has ever said it’s perfect but definately contributes to reducing the spread, so anyone who against that is essentially rooting for COVID-19 instead of the health of the population.”

Read more:
‘We don’t want you here’: St. Thomas mayor responds to anti-lockdown protest

Sunday’s demonstration comes after similar events in Aylmer, Woodstock, and St. Thomas.

Although the gathering in Aylmer two weeks ago saw around 2,000 people, the one in St. Thomas saw a crowd of about 200.

On the London event’s Facebook page, only 25 have said they are going with 38 more people interested.

Read more:
Thousands join in Aylmer ‘Freedom March’ against coronavirus public health measures

“These people want attention and recognition, and I am not prepared to give them that,” London Mayor Ed Holder said on Thursday.

London’s mask by-law came into effect on July 21 following city council approval.

Masks are required in all indoor places throughout the city, and those not following the bylaw could face a fine of $500 or more.

The bylaw excludes children under 12 years of age and people with medical conditions or disabilities, which inhibits their ability to wear a face-covering.

Those unable to apply or remove a face covering themselves are also exempt from the new rule.

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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