MONTREAL -- The Government of Quebec rule requiring that masks be worn in closed public places respects the provisions of the Quebec Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms, according to the Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse (CDPDJ).

In an opinion made public on Wednesday relating to the government regulation that began on July 18, the CDPDJ considered that the violation of fundamental rights is "justified" in the context of the current COVID-19 pandemic.

The CDPJQ found that Article 9.1 allows the government to regulate fundamental rights and freedoms if it demonstrates that the restriction is neither irrational nor arbitrary and that the means are proportionate to the objective.

"The Commission is of the opinion that the chosen measure could rationally and proportionally meet these requirements," the document reads.

According to the Commission, the Article shows it is possible to "reconcile the rights of each person when there is a conflict between these rights and freedoms, and that of the present case. It may be considered that the imposed obligation aims in particular to protect rights to life, safety and integrity of each and everyone."

The decision also emphasizes that the government has taken measures to mitigate possible infringements of the right to equality by, for example, not requiring masks in certain cases such as disability, age and social condition.

The commission said, however, that the obligation imposed by the decree should be removed or modified as soon as it is no longer justified by the circumstances.

-- this report by The Canadian Press was first published Aug. 12, 2020.