Face mask requirements to stay for ‘certain settings’, Welsh Government announces
The mandatory wearing of face masks for ‘certain settings’ will stay in place, the Welsh Government has announced.
They say the face-covering requirements will remain while the coronavirus continues to pose a threat to the public.
It means that face-covering rules will stay even if a decision is made next week to relax restrictions with a move from an alert level one to zero.
First Minister Mark Drakeford said: “We will need everyone’s help to keep coronavirus under control as we continue to respond to the pandemic – this virus has quite certainly not gone away.
“We know many people are still worried and anxious about going out. We will maintain the requirement to wear face coverings in certain places – on public transport and health and social care settings, and others where necessary – to help keep us all safe.”
The announcement refers to the laws remaining in place for ‘certain settings’ which it describes as ‘including public transport and taxis, and health and social care, as a minimum.’
The Welsh Government say that further consideration is being given as to whether face masks will be required in other settings such as retail.
The UK Government has adopted a different approach with most face mask requirements in England set to end on July 19th, referred to as ‘Freedom Day’.
The Scottish government has also targeted July 19th but say the date is not ‘set in stone’.
Health Minister Eluned Morgan said: “Wearing face masks is an effective way of reducing the transmission of coronavirus.
“We all have a duty to help to protect each other. Keeping everyone safe has been the Welsh Government’s priority through the pandemic and will continue to be the priority in future.”
Wales is currently at alert level one with face coverings mandatory in all indoor public places but Mark Drakeford will make a statement on Wednesday about plans to move to a new alert level zero.
On Friday, Education Minister Jeremy Miles announced that face coverings in classrooms will no longer be recommended when schools return from the summer break in September.