Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, has announced that, from 15 June, it will be compulsory for passengers to wear face coverings when using public transport in England.
This coincides with the next stage of easing restrictions – the planned reopening of non-essential retail and return of some secondary school pupils – and the anticipated increase in people using public transport as more people go back to work. Passengers will be required to wear a face covering on their journey to help reduce the risk of transmission when social distancing is not always possible.
The Government is asking operators to introduce face coverings as a requirement for travel from 15 June 2020 and, whilst the Government expects the vast majority of people to comply with this, operators will be able to refuse travel or issue fines to those who fail to comply. The Government will also work with operators to ensure staff are provided with, and wear face coverings, where appropriate for their role.
It is important to note that a face covering is not the same as a face mask – surgical masks must be kept for clinical settings and travellers should instead wear the type of face covering that can be made at home (the Government advice on how to make your own face coverings can be accessed here.