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Is Face Coverings In Shops Compulsory

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nailit | 17:48 Fri 24th Jul 2020 | Law
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Just been into my local corner shop (with mask on) and no other customers were wearing them.
Queried it with the shop assistant who told me that the owner had decided that he was leaving it up to the customers whether to wear one or not.
Also been reported in my local rag that many big name stores are refusing to 'police' customers who dont wear a face covering.

So is this thing *law* or simply guidline's with threat of a fine?
(And how can you be fined for dismissing a 'guidline'?
Thanks.

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//I sneezed in my mask on the way home work last week. I had to sit for half an hour, on the bus, covered in my own snot and germs from work. Is this healthy?// I've just come off the phone to my cousin (today is her birthday). She is the clinical nursing manager ("Matron" in old money) in a large West Country hospital. She has spent her entire working life (>30 years)...
20:28 Sat 25th Jul 2020
It's law. [The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Wearing of Face Coverings in a Relevant Place) (England) Regulations 2020]
https://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2020/791/contents/made
I think the problem is that the UK government has not clarified if mask wearing is law or advisory. Here in Portugal it is the law and masks are worn in all shops
Wearing face coverings in shops doesn't appear to be compulsory, but it is advisable. The police have said that they are not going to enforce this 'advice', because they haven't the manpower. The rules are a bit vague, because some people are excused wearing a mask, and what shop owner is going to risk losing business by getting bolshy with customers who don't wear a mask?
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-53513026
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Thanks Chris & calmck.
So if its law, then can the corner shop owner not also be fined for not enforcing the wearing of face coverings for their customers in their premises?
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//Wearing face coverings in shops doesn't appear to be compulsory//
According to Chris's link it does BB.
Its all a bit vague to me.
Woman in my corner shop has been saying she wouldn't be bothering. Had to nip back home for my mask this morning 'cos the owners have told her 'try' and ensure the guidelines are followed. She was wearing a full face visor. She did say that she had already had one customer who had got into a strop about the wearing of masks/face coverings. He should just have said he was exempt from wearing any. It has been pointed out on here that no proof is needed.
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//He should just have said he was exempt from wearing any. It has been pointed out on here that no proof is needed//

Thats what I dont get Ken. If it was an actual, enforcable, law then just saying that you are exempt from that law wouldnt be enough to exonerate you (for instance, if you were caught driving without a seat belt on, simply saying that you are exempt because you are pregnant or reversing wouldnt be enough to convince plod...)
The police say they can't 'police' it and Sainsbury's and Asda have said they will not be enforcing the rule either, it's not in their remit to do so. I suppose the police will maybe turn up if a fight ensues because of it as they would to any fight, but it's up to the individual I guess. I wore one, but kept pulling it down when I felt the need and leaving it there until I felt I cold breathe again and I will go on doing that until all this madness is over, if it ever is !!
Nailit; If you'll pardon the pun, you've hit the nail on the head there. Given that no certificate of exemption is needed, anyone who doesn't fancy wearing a face covering can quite legitimately go 'bare-faced', as it were. From which, one can only surmise that the guideline is all about lulling the general public into returning to life before Covid19, or as near as dammit. And, of course, getting the economy back on it's feet.
margie if you pull it down, there is a risk that you will pick up virus from your chin/neck or hands and then put it right where you can inhale it.
ps you might find a light scarf easier than a mask
Yes, I may try a light scarf next time.
It isn’t statute law: it’s something the government have introduced with the threat of fines.
The idea presumably is effectively to scare people into doing it so that most people will comply . And it seems to be working.
Everyone seems to be passing the buck about enforcement. It’ll be interesting to see if people gradually stop doing, or whether it’ll put off the casual shopper. Or by contrast bring out all the people who previously were too scared to leave the house
The legislation is in the form of a Statutory Instrument (SI) and as with any SI, there is an Act of Parliament authorising the SI.
Sorry yes you’re right.
I’d forgotten about SIs
It doesn’t really affect the weight of it tho
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I put this question in Law purposely, Im genuinely confused as to whether this is LAW or GUIDENCE. Im none the wiser now with police saying that they cant/wont police this (why? If its law surely they have to...thats what they get paid for) and shops saying that they wont enforce it.
I would have put it in Chatterbank if I had wanted a discussion as to the efficacy of face coverings. As it is I will continue to wear a covering in keeping with government guidlines but would like clarification as to exactly how this is to be policed (if indeed, its a police matter) as its ALL very vague.
It's a regulation. Not a law.
Nailit, it's definitely law in Scotland. The face coverings stuff came in here two weeks ago. I read today that there has only been one fine - well, it's called a Fixed Penalty Notice - by the police. That was issued after a customer in a shop didn't take their advice, follow the suggestion, to wear a face covering.
When I said it was 'law', I suppose I meant it was enforceable, actionable - and can have consequences.
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As it stands, I can simply say that I am exempt from wearing one. If im issued a fine, I can appeal it and go to court where I can say that I am exempt from wearing one. Case dismissed as nobody can disprove it as no GP's are issuing exemption certificates.
What kind of *law* is this?

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