The ‘mandate’ to wear masks in shops and on public transport is pure nonsense as is the latest fake variant scare.
Nothing has changed. Every person in the UK is exempt from mask wearing and all associated fines and coercion, this includes workers, school children, and all adults who declare themselves exempt in all public places including shops, hospitals and public transport. Feeling distress is reason enough to declare yourself exempt and no proof or reason for your exemption is required by law.
If you feel physically or mentally distressed by wearing a mask for any reason, you are exempt.
You do not need to explain to anybody why you are exempt OR provide medical documentation of your exemption. See Govt Guidelines (See Below for Full Details)
Under the equality Act of 2010, you can claim compensation up to £9000 if you are discriminated against due to your mask exemption.
Govt Guidelines say you should NOT challenge members of the public for proof. Refusing entry based on a disability is an offence which you are personally liable for. Company policy does NOT supercede the Equality Act 2010.
Key Scientific Facts
There is no reliable or policy-grade evidence that face masks can reduce the risk from covid-19.
N95 masks filter 95% of particles with a diameter of 0.3 microns or larger. covid-19 particles are .08 – .12 microns.
Prolonged mask use increases the risk of catching respiratory illnesses.
Scientists have found evidence that some face masks are laced with toxic chemicals.
Studies point out the likelihood that babies are significantly harmed by general masking practices.
Find out more about mask wearing: https://thewhiterose.uk/tag/masks/
Mask refusal template letters: https://thewhiterose.uk/downloads/ (scroll down)
Proof that masks do more harm than good (Dr Vernon Coleman): https://www.vernoncoleman.com/harmthangood.pdf
What the Government Guidance actually says:
There are some places where you must wear a face covering by law, unless you are exempt or have a reasonable excuse (see the ‘When you do not need to wear a face covering’ section below).
In England, you must wear a face covering in the following indoor settings (examples are given in brackets):
shops and supermarkets (places which offer goods or services for retail sale or hire)
post offices, banks, building societies, high street solicitors and accountants, credit unions, short-term loan providers, savings clubs and money service businesses
estate and letting agents
premises providing personal care and beauty treatments (barbers, hair salons, tattoo and piercing studios, nail salons and massage centres)
premises providing veterinary services
retail travel agents
public facing funeral offices
takeaways without space for consumption of food or drink on premises
shopping centres (malls and indoor markets)
community centres (including village halls), youth centres, members clubs and social clubs
libraries and public reading rooms
polling stations and premises used for the counting of votes
places of worship
crematoria and burial ground chapels
visitor attractions and entertainment venues (museums, galleries, cinemas, indoor theatres, concert halls, cultural and heritage sites, indoor areas at aquariums, zoos and visitor farms, bingo halls, amusement arcades, adventure activity centres, indoor sports stadiums, funfairs, indoor theme parks, casinos, skating rinks, bowling alleys, indoor play areas including soft-play areas)
public areas in hotels and hostels
indoor areas of open-air sports stadiums
public transport (aeroplanes, trains, trams, buses, coaches and ferries), taxis and private hire vehicles
cars or small vans during any professionally delivered driving lesson, during any driving test, and during any practical test to qualify as an approved driving instructor
heavy goods vehicle (HGVs) during any driving lesson and during any driving test
driving theory test centres
transport hubs (airports, rail and tram stations and terminals, maritime ports and terminals, bus and coach stations and terminals)
motorway service areas
Staff within these settings, except some transport workers (see the ‘Face coverings at work’ section below), and those working in premises providing legal or financial services are required to wear face coverings when they are in a part that is open to the public and when they are likely to come into close contact with members of the public, such as on a shop floor.
Staff may also wear face coverings when working in settings where face coverings are not required, and businesses are encouraged to support them in doing so.
You are required to wear a face covering on entering any of these settings and must keep it on until you leave unless you are exempt or have a reasonable excuse for removing it. Examples of what would usually be a reasonable excuse are listed in the ‘If you are not able to wear a face covering’ section below.
You should continue to wear a face covering in other indoor places, especially those that are crowded and enclosed and where you may come into contact with people you do not normally meet.
Face coverings are not legally required in hospitality settings given that they cannot be worn while eating and drinking. They are also not legally required in exercise facilities including gyms, dance studios, swimming pools or leisure centres (see the ‘When you do not need to wear a face covering’ section below).
Face coverings and face masks are needed in healthcare settings to comply with infection, prevention, control (IPC) guidance. This includes hospitals and primary or community care settings, such as GP surgeries. They should also be worn by everyone accessing or visiting care homes.
When you do not need to wear a face covering
Face coverings are only legally required in the settings listed in ‘When to wear a face covering’ section above. Settings which are exempt from wearing a face covering because it would not be practical to do so include:
restaurants, cafés and canteens
pubs, bars and shisha bars
gyms and exercise facilities (including dance studios)
leisure centres, swimming pools, and water and aqua parks
nightclubs, dance halls and discotheques
Customers, visitors or staff may choose to wear face coverings in these settings. Businesses cannot prevent staff, visitors or customers from wearing a face covering in these settings if they choose to wear one, and it is an offence to do so.
Face coverings are also not required in premises or a part of a premises where the main activity is eating, drinking, exercising or dancing. This might include venues being used to host wedding receptions or some music events as well as restaurants, pubs, bars and nightclubs.
This is because it is not practical for people to wear a face covering when eating or drinking, and it is not recommended that face coverings are worn when undertaking strenuous activity, including exercising and dancing.
Some wedding or hospitality venues might ask you to wear a face covering and you may still be required to wear a face covering in parts of the premises where the main activity is not taking place.
While not mandatory, you should continue to wear a face covering in indoor places, which are crowded and enclosed and where you may come into contact with people you do not normally meet.
(Because Covid-19 does not strike when you are either sitting down, drinking or eating, exercising or dancing!)
If you are not able to wear a face covering
In settings where face coverings are required in England, there are some circumstances where people may not be able to wear a face covering.
Please be mindful and respectful of such circumstances. Some people are less able to wear face coverings, and the reasons for this may not be visible to others.
This includes (but is not limited to):
children under the age of 11 (The UK Health Security Agency does not recommend face coverings for children under the age of 3 for health and safety reasons)
people who cannot put on, wear or remove a face covering because of a physical or mental illness or impairment, or disability
people for whom putting on, wearing or removing a face covering will cause severe distress
people speaking to or providing assistance to someone who relies on lip reading, clear sound or facial expressions to communicate
to avoid the risk of harm or injury to yourself or others
police officers and other emergency workers, given that this may interfere with their ability to serve the public
There are also scenarios when you are permitted to remove a face covering:
if asked to do so for identification in premises such as a bank, building society or post office
if asked to do so by shop staff or relevant employees for identification, for assessing health recommendations (for example by a pharmacist) or for age identification purposes, including when buying age restricted products such as alcohol
in order to take medication
when it is reasonably necessary to sing, for example – as part of a choir, service, rehearsal or performance
If you have an age, health or disability reason for not wearing a face covering:
you do not routinely need to show any written evidence of this
you do not need to show an exemption card
This means that you do not need to seek advice or request a letter from a medical professional about your reason for not wearing a face covering.
However, some people may feel more comfortable showing something that says they do not have to wear a face covering. This could be in the form of an exemption card, badge or even a home-made sign.
Carrying an exemption card or badge is a personal choice and is not required by law.
If you wish to use an exemption card or badge, you can download exemption card templates. You can then print these yourself or show them on a mobile device. Please note that the government is not able to provide physical exemption cards or badges.
If you use assistive technology (such as a screen reader) and need a version of these templates in a more accessible format, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. Please say what format you need the template in and what assistive technology you use.
For exemptions in different parts of the UK please refer to the specific guidance for: