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Fake COVID-19 notices in Coquitlam claim all restrictions lifted

FILE - Packages of face masks. (CITYNEWS/Tony Fera)
Summary

Coquitlam's mayor is urging people to not take seriously another wave of bogus COVID-19 notices

New fake notices claiming COVID-19 is a hoax have been delivered to some local businesses

COQUITLAM (NEWS 1130) – Another wave of bogus notices declaring COVID-19 is a hoax and that all restrictions have been lifted have been delivered to some businesses on the Lower Mainland, and the mayor of Coquitlam says anti-maskers have been flaunting them.

The notices are over-the-top and full of some of the more extreme conspiracy theories out there. Some throw around Latin phrases and threaten dire consequences for businesses that don’t immediately follow the bogus order listed on them that claims all restrictions are lifted.

While there’s not much chance a business owner would mistake these notices for anything official, Coquitlam Mayor Richard Stewart says some people buy into them enough to print them off and try to use them as justification to flout rules.

“These were dropped off by local residents who downloaded something off somewhere and decided to go shopping. But they made it clear that they weren’t going to wear a mask because of this order, and dropped the order off at the local business,” he explained, adding some notices “look almost legal.”

“They’re quite ridiculous. The one I saw yesterday, for example, even threatened the death penalty for any businesses that didn’t abide by their lifting of the restrictions for COVID,” Stewart added.

Stewart says staff at businesses are being pressured or even harassed. He notes people have called city hall to report the notices.

“We just want everyone to understand that there are really ridiculous conspiracy theories out there and ridiculous persons trying to get everyone to ease up on the restrictions that got us this far,” Stewart said.


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He urges anyone who sees these notices to ignore them.

“We just want people to understand that the world of science and epidemiology are all united behind the fact that we’re almost there. Let’s get the vaccinations, let’s move forward, and let’s open our lives up because of science, not because of a conspiracy theory,” Stewart said.

B.C. is currently in the second step of its restart plan. Masks are still mandatory in indoor, public spaces.