Face coverings compulsory on public transport in England from 15 June

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Domh245

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IF you get them in place quickly enough.
When I was suffering from high pollen counts early last week, I took to just sneezing into my elbow/shoulder when out and about - far easier/quicker than any tissues and significantly less unpleasant than a mask!
 

Journeyman

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Not everyone has that luxury. If you didn't have have a car, would you not travel because of the face covering rule?
I wouldn't travel unless I absolutely had to, that's for sure. I'm really seriously unimpressed by this imposition, which is being done typically badly and with absolutely no sensible justification behind it.

I'm in Scotland, and I'll be lobbying my MP and MSP about this - I hope it won't get imposed here, although given Nicola Sturgeon's determination to try and appear morally superior to the English at every opportunity, we'll probably have to start wearing hazmat suits.
 

Tomp94

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So you can get fined £80 for failing to wear a face covering on public transport, despite non medical grade coverings being next to useless. You really couldn’t make it up. 1984!
 

MikeWM

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Not everyone has that luxury. If you didn't have have a car, would you not travel because of the face covering rule?
I don't (currently) have a car. I'll certainly travel significantly less, if at all, for leisure while this persists, as I do it for enjoyment and I don't find breathing in hot, damp, stale air enjoyable. Which is about £3000 a year the railway won't get from me.
 

MikeWM

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When I was suffering from high pollen counts early last week, I took to just sneezing into my elbow/shoulder when out and about - far easier/quicker than any tissues and significantly less unpleasant than a mask!
My hay fever is usually worst in June. How are you supposed to sneeze in a mask anyway? Take it down, sneeze, put it back up? Every time you sneeze? That's a lot of touching, surely defeating what remotely little point there may already be.
 

Bobdogs

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Personally, I stay well away from people wearing masks as
1) Are they wearing them for their own protection?
or
2) Have they got symptoms that they are either trying to hide or think that because they are wearing a mask they will not pass on the virus?
No bus or train for me for a while, masks or no masks.
 

Vespa

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Until yesterday, woven plastic face coverings were 75p in Spar and reusable cloth ones £3-5 in Decathlon. They may sell out now, of course, but if you can't find one, make one. There are lots of patterns online, including no-sew.
The Spar I went to was charging £3.99 for a single mask.

A SINGLE MASK.

No wonder its "So dear, so Spar"
 

mmh

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I give people in masks a wide berth as I assume they're more fearful than I am, and I've no wish to unnecessarily annoy or worry people. I don't want to unnecessarily legitimise that fear, though.
 

MikeWM

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Someone I know involved in the response planning in the civil service (who I've mentioned here before, though obviously not by name) says the Unions insisted, and the Goverment doesn't want to pick fights with them at the moment. This would explain why public transport but not supermarkets, and might also explain why public transport has been "essential use only" so far - you may recall it being posted here that the Unions had said it before.
Given the virtually-simultaneous messages from the Unions in response yesterday, I can believe this.

Although it seems they may be about to find that this was a bad plan

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news...-strike-over-shappss-face-covering-volunteers

Rail unions have threatened to strike over government plans for an “army” of volunteers at transport hubs to remind travellers to wear a face covering.

The transport secretary, Grant Shapps, announced the policy of using volunteers without consultation according to the RMT union, which condemned moves to put unpaid workers in “safety critical roles”.

...

The RMT general secretary, Mick Cash, said the Department for Transport had “done a backroom deal to recruit unpaid and unskilled workers on our railway without even so much as conversation with rail unions,” and the union would consider a strike ballot.
!

I've always been very pro-Unions. But given the actions of the rail unions (along with the teachers unions) over the last few months, I'm sorry to say they are rapidly losing my support.
 
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Greenboy

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So you can get fined £80 for failing to wear a face covering on public transport, despite non medical grade coverings being next to useless. You really couldn’t make it up. 1984!
Who told you that....... only it sounds like you have made it up?
 

nedchester

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Given the virtually-simultaneous messages from the Unions in response yesterday, I can believe this.

Although it seems they may be about to find that this was a bad plan

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news...-strike-over-shappss-face-covering-volunteers

!

I've always been very pro-Unions. But given the actions of the rail unions (along with the teachers unions) over the last few months, I'm sorry to say they are rapidly losing my support.
I was a rep for the NUT for many years so am a big supporter of the unions. I think the teaching unions have been quite reasonable just wanting reasonable adjustments. My wife is still a teacher and they are introducing groups over the next couple of weeks not shouting 'strike' like the RMT.

The RMT probably don't have grounds for strikes here. The 'volunteers' are there to help rail staff not take their jobs. I suspect any ballot over this would be deemed illegal. Additionally, a Tory Government with a 80+ majority wanting to get the economy going again aren't going to take kindly to this.

Put it this way if we can't get people back on the trains the RMT will have more to worry about than a few volunteers.
 

Bantamzen

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Given the virtually-simultaneous messages from the Unions in response yesterday, I can believe this.

Although it seems they may be about to find that this was a bad plan

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news...-strike-over-shappss-face-covering-volunteers

!

I've always been very pro-Unions. But given the actions of the rail unions (along with the teachers unions) over the last few months, I'm sorry to say they are rapidly losing my support.
I'm a former public sector TU Rep, and none of this surprises me. But at least now we can dispense with the notion that mask wearing is a scientifically backed civic duty and call it what it is, a politically motivated measure because the government can't afford to have a scrap with the unions at the moment.
 

Searle

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So you can get fined £80 for failing to wear a face covering on public transport, despite non medical grade coverings being next to useless. You really couldn’t make it up. 1984!
40,000 people have died in this country alone due to the virus, and you're calling out 1984 because you're being told to wear a face mask? I think you need to take a step back and look at the bigger picture here.

Even if they aren't a huge amount of use, if this change can save even one person's life, I can't see how you can actively be against it.
 

Greenboy

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40,000 people have died in this country alone due to the virus, and you're calling out 1984 because you're being told to wear a face mask? I think you need to take a step back and look at the bigger picture here.

Even if they aren't a huge amount of use, if this change can save even one person's life, I can't see how you can actively be against it.
Exactly...... how much trouble is it just to put a face covering on? Seriously if that's all people have got to worry about........,
 

Trainfan2019

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1. There is no scientifically proved point.
2. Everybody looks stupid.
3. I can’t wear one without it fogging up my glasses.
Wearing a mask fogs my glasses too but I'd rather comply with regulations and wear a mask. I had to wear a mask to return to work.

I've seen people in a variety of masks out and about the past few weeks. I don't think anyone looks stupid, even myself.
 

Starmill

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How exactly is forcing someone to wear a face mask if they wish to travel further than walking distance 'getting back to normal' ?
Is it not obvious? Because currently many people without car access are being prevented from travelling further than they can walk in any circumstances, unless they are going to work perhaps.
 

Starmill

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I can agree with the argument "there's no evidence they work, but they don't do any harm so why not?". I'm not so sure I agree that's the best way to write legislation.
Your claim that they have no effect is a false claim. People have linked to peer reviewed papers, politely, again and again, for your benefit.

Either you could come up with comprehensive rebuttals to these, or you could drop it. Regardless of what you say, the evidence is convincing: the coverings reduce the transmission of the disease by aerosol particles from infected people. They are being recommended in spaces where closer contact is inevitable, which increases risk, where people are inside, which increases risk, and where there are an increasing number of people who mix widely every day, which increases risk.

Nothing you try to complain about is going to make this less true. No claims are being made that cloth masks protect their wearer. No claims are being made that they are 100% effective, or even very effective, because even some wearing of the coverings reduces the reproduction rate of the virus.
 

Starmill

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Society, aided by the government, has been mocking people who wear masks in public (outside of a medical / work setting) for the past 3 months, and now we’re told to get on with it and wear them..?
Quite. It was appalling to send the message that masks are foolish. But so many things the government did early on the crisis were appalling, this one is easily missed.
 

6Gman

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How exactly is forcing someone to wear a face mask if they wish to travel further than walking distance 'getting back to normal' ?
Because the only way we can get back to normal is by reducing the infection rate. And anything which helps to reduce the infection rate is a step toward that aim.
 

6Gman

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Your claim that they have no effect is a false claim. People have linked to peer reviewed papers, politely, again and again, for your benefit.

Either you could come up with comprehensive rebuttals to these, or you could drop it. Regardless of what you say, the evidence is convincing: the coverings reduce the transmission of the disease by aerosol particles from infected people. They are being recommended in spaces where closer contact is inevitable, which increases risk, where people are inside, which increases risk, and where there are an increasing number of people who mix widely every day, which increases risk.

Nothing you try to complain about is going to make this less true. No claims are being made that cloth masks protect their wearer. No claims are being made that they are 100% effective, or even very effective, because even some wearing of the coverings reduces the reproduction rate of the virus.
Thank you for that post with which I fully agree.

I think part of the problem is that many of the papers showing little or no benefit are studying the protective value of face coverings (i.e. do they reduce the chance of catching the virus) rather than their function in reducing transmission. The evidence on the latter is more convincing.

It cannot really be disputed that dozens of countries have concluded that face coverings are worthwhile, nor that many reputable organisations (e.g. the BMA) support their use.
 

mmh

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Quite. It was appalling to send the message that masks are foolish. But so many things the government did early on the crisis were appalling, this one is easily missed.
I'm willing to give the benefit of the doubt about the initial response. No doubt it could have been better, but it happened. Right now the important thing is the future, we can and no doubt some of us including me will pontificate about the past later.

If it was an appalling mistake to not encourage masks or mandate them early on, why are they not being mandated today but only from the 15th?
 

MikeWM

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Even if they aren't a huge amount of use, if this change can save even one person's life, I can't see how you can actively be against it.
Ok, I propose all motor vehicles from now on are restricted to 5mph at all times. That will save thousands of lives a year. Why would anyone oppose that?

Seriously though, this 'safety-ism' appears to be going to become the 'if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear' of the 2020s :(
 

6Gman

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I'd rather put up with masks (in far more settings than they are being required here) for a year or two to knock it on the head sooner and ensure it stays gone. It's a minor measure which could help greatly, and if it doesn't it can just be dropped.
Indeed. I do wonder when people's idea of a "dystopian world" is one where you're required to wear a face covering while travelling on a bus or train.
 

MikeWM

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I was a rep for the NUT for many years so am a big supporter of the unions. I think the teaching unions have been quite reasonable just wanting reasonable adjustments. My wife is still a teacher and they are introducing groups over the next couple of weeks not shouting 'strike' like the RMT.
I think the initial response to opening schools was rather problematic and didn't help the aim (we urgently need to get children back to schools). But I'd agree that, in the end, the message became more suitably nuanced.

Put it this way if we can't get people back on the trains the RMT will have more to worry about than a few volunteers.
I agree (though compulsory face coverings won't do much to get me back on the trains, quite the opposite!). But look at Mick Cash yesterday (this is from the Guardian, but I assume it is accurate)

The RMT has been campaigning for compulsory wearing of masks on public transport and this is long overdue, but we fear this announcement is being driven not by safety concerns but by the premature easing of the lockdown which is swelling passenger numbers and making social distancing on transport increasingly impossible
By themselves, face masks are nowhere near enough to protect passengers and worker safety on public transport. They need to be combined with preventing non-essential travel and compulsory enforcement of two-metre social distancing.
He sounds like he's actively campaigning to make most of his own staff redundant!
 

Yew

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40,000 people have died in this country alone due to the virus, and you're calling out 1984 because you're being told to wear a face mask? I think you need to take a step back and look at the bigger picture here.

Even if they aren't a huge amount of use, if this change can save even one person's life, I can't see how you can actively be against it.
200,000 people a year die from Malnutrition, yet plenty of people are against raising the aid budget.
 

Bantamzen

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40,000 people have died in this country alone due to the virus, and you're calling out 1984 because you're being told to wear a face mask? I think you need to take a step back and look at the bigger picture here.

Even if they aren't a huge amount of use, if this change can save even one person's life, I can't see how you can actively be against it.

Exactly...... how much trouble is it just to put a face covering on? Seriously if that's all people have got to worry about........,
There's plenty of explanations upthread as to why people object. And frankly this "you'll kill people" approach is starting to wear a bit thin, particularly when you start to look at the demographics of the victims, even more so when you read that the decision to impose them may well be politically, not scientifically motivated. If the government came out today and said that you must wear masks only because they don't want a fight with the unions, would you be happy to comply?

I'll repeat again for the benefit of the thread, the WHO don't recommend wearing masks in public because they give a false sense of security, and put pressure on medical equipment logistics. And there is no scientific consensus on the effectiveness of either protection from, or transmission of the virus.

Ok, I propose all motor vehicles from now on are restricted to 5mph at all times. That will save thousands of lives a year. Why would anyone oppose that?

Seriously though, this 'safety-ism' appears to be going to become the 'if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear' of the 2020s :(
And don't forget the bloke with a red flag walking in front of the trains. Oh and perhaps wrap yourself up in bubble wrap to prevent injury to you and others.
 

sjpowermac

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I was a rep for the NUT for many years so am a big supporter of the unions. I think the teaching unions have been quite reasonable just wanting reasonable adjustments. My wife is still a teacher and they are introducing groups over the next couple of weeks not shouting 'strike' like the RMT.

The RMT probably don't have grounds for strikes here. The 'volunteers' are there to help rail staff not take their jobs. I suspect any ballot over this would be deemed illegal. Additionally, a Tory Government with a 80+ majority wanting to get the economy going again aren't going to take kindly to this.

Put it this way if we can't get people back on the trains the RMT will have more to worry about than a few volunteers.
I agree with all you’ve put there. The teaching unions have been excellent, certainly at a local level, and have actually worked very hard to help get schools open.

Many of the posters who are jumping up and down about ‘weak’ evidence for face masks were perfectly happy, since it suited them, to accept the similarly weak evidence that children don’t transmit the virus.

I think if the TOCs were to issue branded masks at the station then many of the enthusiasts would suddenly drop their objections;)
 
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