Queensland’s chief health officer is considering the possibility of mandating face masks for children under the age of 12 as the Australian state’s biggest Covid-19 outbreak since the first wave last year grew by 16 cases on Thursday, August 5th.
If pursued, the mandate would mean that children under the age of 12 would be forced to wear face coverings.
Dr Jeanette Young, Queensland’s chief health officer, pointed out that the state only requires children aged 12 and above to wear face masks.
“But we are looking if it’s possible to do it for younger [people]. For a start we will have to look at different masks,” the chief health officer noted that the current face coverings are “too big” for children.
“There’s a whole range of things that we need to look at before we could do it, but yes we are definitely looking at [the possibility].”
Whilst the government is seeking to mandate masks for kids, they have chosen to ignore the evidence that shows that face coverings are neither safe nor effective. For example, results of a clinical trial that was conducted earlier this year discovered that wearing a face mask for just three minutes had “adverse effects” on children and could lead to breathing problems.
During the study, researchers measured the carbon dioxide level in inhaled air with and without two types of face coverings in a controlled and well-ventilated room, using healthy volunteer children. Researchers measured means between 13120 (384) and 13910 (374) ppm of carbon dioxide in inhaled air under surgical and filtering facepiece 2 (FFP2) masks, which researchers stated: “is higher than what has already been deemed unacceptable by the German Federal Environmental Office by a factor of 6.”
The researchers concluded that the face masks had adverse effects on the children and the effects of carbon dioxide inhalation lead to “impairments attributable to hypercapnia.” Hypercapnia is where there is too much carbon dioxide present in the bloodstream, which can cause symptoms such as dizziness, headaches, and shortness of breath.
Additionally, mask-wearing makes it increasingly difficult for young children to develop linguistic skills and prevents children with hearing impairments from lip reading.
Furthermore, a team of Italian professors of plastic surgery warned that the prolonged pressure from the plastic straps could leave young children with permanently protruding ears.
Researchers from the University of Witten/Herdecke in Germany have established an online registry for parents to report on the side effects of mask-wearing. Over 18,000 parents chose to respond, with more than half reporting that masks gave their children headaches and made it difficult for them to concentrate.
More than one-third reported other side effects including increased reluctance to go to school, unhappiness, malaise, impaired learning, drowsiness and fatigue.
After considering these reports as well as testimony from other researchers, a court in Germany recently ruled in favour of a mother who argued that her children’s basic rights were being violated by the mask mandates and social distancing at her children’s two schools.
As a result, the court ordered the schools to end the mandates, declaring that they damaged the “mental, physical and spiritual well-being” of students while failing to offer “any discernible benefit for the children themselves.”
Whilst some countries, such as Germany, have taken the step to make mask mandates for children illegal, governments around the world continue to ignore the evidence the face coverings have adverse effects on children and prevent them from developing properly. It is child abuse to seek mask mandates for young children.