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Coronavirus: Face masks and coverings to be compulsory in England's shops - BBC News

Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Administrator Posts: 9,519 Scope community team

Coronavirus: Face masks and coverings to be compulsory in England's shops - BBC News

Wearing a face covering in shops and supermarkets in England is to become mandatory from 24 July. 

Those who fail to comply with the new rules will face a fine of up to £100, the government is to announce. 

The move will bring England into line with Scotland and other major European nations like Spain, Italy and Germany.

Since mid-May, the public have been advised to wear coverings in enclosed public spaces, where they may encounter people they would not usually meet. 

It has been compulsory on public transport in England since 15 June.

As lockdown eases it can be an anxious time as we navigate through these changes.

One significant change has face coverings. 

How are you feeling about lockdown easing? Has there been enough information for those who are shielding? Do you plan on going shopping? Let us know in the comments below!
Community Partner
Scope

Replies

  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Administrator Posts: 9,519 Scope community team

    Who is exempt from wearing a face covering?

    There are also a series of factors which the Government describes as a “reasonable excuse”, which also means you don’t have to wear a mask:

    • If you have a physical or mental illness or impairment, or a disability that means you cannot put on, wear or remove a face covering
    • If putting on, wearing or removing a face covering would cause you severe distress
    • If you are travelling with, or providing assistance to, someone who relies on lip reading to communicate
    • If you are travelling to avoid injury or escape the risk of harm, and you do not have a face covering with you
    • If you need to remove it during your journey to avoid harm or injury or the risk of harm or injury to yourself or others
    • If you need to eat, drink, or take medication you can remove your face covering
    • If you are asked to remove your face covering by a police officer or other official, for example to check your railcard
    • According to the website Autism Eye, these rules around “reasonable excuses” also cover passengers with autism.
    Community Partner
    Scope
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Administrator Posts: 9,519 Scope community team
    This also might be useful for people:

    What is a face covering exemption card?

    Those who are exempted from wearing a face mask will be asked to get a "face-covering exemption card".

    The card is available to download for free on the TfL website.

    Those exempt will be required to carry the card on their person while using public transport.

    TfL will also recognise similar cards that may have been issued by other transport operators.

    The card can also be displayed on a smartphone.

    If you do not have a printer or a smartphone, you can contact TfL and they will print and post a card to you.

    Some TfL staff may also use this card.

    Community Partner
    Scope
  • serenity2serenity2 Member Posts: 189 Pioneering
    thank yoU thank you for sharing this @Chloe_Scope

     :)
    Best Wishes
    serenity2 
  • katho31katho31 Member Posts: 699 Pioneering
    HI, I i had hair cut today and blow dry, they had rang me weeks ago so i could have an appointment, only 2 staff and 2 customers were allowed, face masks were on counter, hand sanitizer also staff wiped everywhere down constantle even hairbrushes/dryers/combs/seats. coffee was in a cardboard cup that i had to throw in bin when id drank it. it took three quarters of an hour longer, but they were lovely and nice to have hair cut, they had face visors on and gloves, price increase by 3 pound for cut/blow dry.
  • justjudithjustjudith Member Posts: 9 Listener
    Hi, is there any similar scheme outside of TfL?  

    How does one "prove" that you have a reasonable reason not to wear a mask?  People with invisible disabilities have to show medical records?  I am speaking not only on my behalf but on behalf of friends and you.  If a person would freak out wearing a mask - how to tell every shop, bus driver etc? 

    I use buses. I wear a mask as little as possible. I still have trouble with the mask riding up and affecting my sight. Masks freak me out - the thought of wearing then in shops does not fill me with joy.
  • oldblokeinavanoldblokeinavan Member Posts: 9 Listener
    Re: Masks, 
    Let's have some facts...... The government gave guidance, not law, simple.

    I took a train journey last week for the first time since lockdown, I have both visible and non-visible disabilities..... I am 'exempt' according to the government guidance.......

    I was challenged by a policeman on the train asking where my mask was....
    I explained i am exempt, he asked why?
    I replied, this is private matter (because of the Equalities Act 2010)
    He asked for documentation to prove exemption, I explained, not required, (due to the Act).

    If I had been a more 'meek person, I would have been seriously intimidated by the police's conduct, - he backed off once I explained.  He did ask why I was being awkward, I explained that I wasn't, I just knew the applicable law, not guidance.  He went away with his tail between his legs !!!

    The upshot is this...... You do not have to prove or explain ANYTHING TO ANYONE, if you are dxempt, you are exempt, tell the police or the shop, or the person on the street, exactly where to get off, politely of course!
    Bon Courage!
  • TopkittenTopkitten Member Posts: 1,172 Pioneering
    Since the law was passed I have seen (on the few occasions I have been out) fewer people wearing masks than I did before it. My cleaning lady has witnessed a few instances where the people have been challenged by shop staff and received a nasty mouthful of derogatory comments for challenging them. This has also occurred on buses. On the other hand though she has also seen a number of bus drivers using the law just to be difficult for no apparent reason. Evidently people do not like being told what to do by anyone, not even people enforcing the law and others will use any excuse to try to prove themselves to be important.

    TK
    "I'm on the wrong side of heaven and the righteous side of hell" - from Wrong side of heaven by Five Finger Death Punch.
  • cupcake88cupcake88 Member Posts: 289 Pioneering
    Out of interest How would you prove that you didn't  need to use one would people have to carry around  a doctor note 
  • oldblokeinavanoldblokeinavan Member Posts: 9 Listener
    @cupcake88 this is my whole point, due to the Equalities Act 2010, you do not have to prove it to anyone !
  • Chloe_ScopeChloe_Scope Administrator Posts: 9,519 Scope community team
    Hi, is there any similar scheme outside of TfL?  

    How does one "prove" that you have a reasonable reason not to wear a mask?  People with invisible disabilities have to show medical records?  I am speaking not only on my behalf but on behalf of friends and you.  If a person would freak out wearing a mask - how to tell every shop, bus driver etc? 

    I use buses. I wear a mask as little as possible. I still have trouble with the mask riding up and affecting my sight. Masks freak me out - the thought of wearing then in shops does not fill me with joy.
    This card could be used anywhere, not just in London. The sunflower lanyard system also have face covering exemption cards. :)
    Community Partner
    Scope
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