Grant Shapps & Sadiq Khan: UK citizens will not be forced to wear mask until Scientists in the state certifies that it is necessary in stopping Coronavirus, said Grant Shapps, Welwyn Hatfield MP and Secretary of State for Transport, adding the evidence on whether masks work was “quite mixed”.
The public will not be told to wear face masks to stop coronavirus unless the government’s scientists say it is necessary, said Grant Shapps.
This is coming after the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, on Friday, called for people to wear non-medical face masks – such as scarves or bandanas – in public as “additional protection” to social distancing.
Although, Nose Masks have been made compulsory in some places, including in New York.
Mr Khan urged the UK government to change its guidelines on face masks, saying masks should be worn when people cannot keep two metres apart such as on public transport or while shopping.
“Wearing a non-medical facial covering makes it less likely you may inadvertently give somebody else Covid-19,” he told BBC Breakfast.
“What I’m lobbying for is, at the moment, when you can’t keep your distance, wear a non-medical facial covering,” he said.
“But when it comes to exiting lockdown, we may need to have all of us wearing it as well.”
An IG user @georginac43 responds to Grant Shapps says,
I’m so unhappy about the ignorance you displayed about wearing masks! The idea is not to protect the individual wearing the mask, it is to protect others from the “spit” released from the person wearing it! Do you really think that we don’t want to protect others? Surely it’s what we have been doing by self isolating. I have listened to many scientists and we do not have to take masks from the NHS, these masks can be simply made in cotton! So stop this nonsense! If it helps to stop the spread, then let’s do it! Please grasp this very simple idea.
Mr Sadiq Khan referred to the Centre for Disease Control (CDC) in the US, which has now recommended people to wear cloth face masks when outside their homes.
In Germany, face masks are also recommended to be worn in shops and on public transport, while in countries including the Czech Republic and Slovakia face masks are compulsory.
It is important that the UK is “no longer an outlier” compared with other countries, Mr Khan said.
Bashing Mayor Khan again, Grant Shapps, said the UK government’s social distancing guidelines do not mention face masks adding that its important guidance about nose mask come from the governments scientists.
“We need to absolutely be guided by the scientists,” he said.
Mr Shapps added that Mr Khan “acknowledges… that it is possible that wearing of masks could do more harm than good in certain situations”.
“There is also evidence out there that wearing it could be counter-productive so, rather than sort of jump to the incorrect conclusion and do more harm than good, I think it’s right to ask the scientists to provide guidance on it.”
“If the scientists come out and say yep this is actually what people need to do, then fine we will absolutely ask people to do that. But until they do do that and unless they do that that isn’t the message that we’re going to be sending.”
Meanwhile the number of confirmed coronavirus cases in the UK has now reached more than 108 ,000, as at Friday, 18th April. A total of 14,576 people with the virus have died in hospital.
Grant Shapps & Sadiq Khan