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Slow the spread and wear a face covering

by Guy Murphy

Slow the spread and wear a face covering

With lockdown restrictions starting to be slowly eased and more people coming into contact with each other, it is really important that we all continue to take steps to protect not only yourself, but also those around us from COVID-19.

Knowsley Council urges all residents who are able to wear a face covering to ensure that they a familiar with the guidance and to wear a face covering when required. By doing so, we all play a vital role in our continue recovery and return to normality.

What is a face covering?

In the context of COVID-19 a face covering is something which covers the nose and mouth.

There are many different face coverings available to purchase. These include cloth face coverings and disposal versions. Some people also use bandanas or other garments but these are likely to be less effective if they do not fit securely.

Face coverings are largely intended to protect others, not the wearer, against the spread of infection because they cover the nose and mouth, which are the main confirmed sources of transmission of virus that causes coronavirus infection (COVID-19).

Can I wear a face visor or shield instead?

You can wear a visor or shield in addition to a face covering but not instead of one. This is because face visors or shields do not cover the nose and mouth.

When do I need to wear a face covering?

It is a legal requirement, unless exempt,  to wear a face covering when inside the majority of indoor settings.

In England you must wear a face covering in the following indoor settings (examples are given in brackets):

  • public transport (aeroplanes, trains, trams and buses)
  • taxis and private hire vehicles
  • transport hubs (airports, rail and tram stations and terminals, maritime ports and terminals, bus and coach stations and terminals)
  • shops and supermarkets (places which offer goods or services for retail sale or hire)
  • shopping centres (malls and indoor markets)
  • auction houses
  • premises providing hospitality (bars, pubs, restaurants, cafes), except when seated at a table to eat or drink
  • post offices, banks, building societies, high-street solicitors and accountants, credit unions, short-term loan providers, savings clubs and money service businesses
  • estate and lettings agents
  • theatres
  • premises providing personal care and beauty treatments (hair salons, barbers, nail salons, massage centres, tattoo and piercing parlours)
  • premises providing veterinary services
  • visitor attractions and entertainment venues (museums, galleries, cinemas, theatres, concert halls, cultural and heritage sites, aquariums, indoor zoos and visitor farms, bingo halls, amusement arcades, adventure activity centres, indoor sports stadiums, funfairs, theme parks, casinos, skating rinks, bowling alleys, indoor play areas including soft-play areas)
  • libraries and public reading rooms
  • places of worship
  • funeral service providers (funeral homes, crematoria and burial ground chapels)
  • community centres, youth centres and social clubs
  • exhibition halls and conference centres
  • public areas in hotels and hostels
  • storage and distribution facilities

You are expected to wear a face covering before entering any of these settings and must keep it on until you leave unless there is a reasonable excuse for removing it.

You should also wear a face covering in indoor places not listed here where social distancing may be difficult and where you will come into contact with people you do not normally meet. This includes secondary school pupils continuing to wear face coverings (unless exempt) in education settings until at least mid May.

Face coverings are needed in NHS settings, including hospitals and primary or community care settings, such as GP surgeries. They are also advised to be worn in care homes.

If travelling outside of England, you should check local guidance and restrictions.