From Friday, July 24, face masks, also referred to by the Government as “face coverings” must be worn in shops and supermarkets in England. 

It’s already a legal requirement to wear face masks on public transport, however, with the guidance now extended to shops and supermarkets, shop and business owners alike need to take note.

There has been some confusion in the media of late as to where and when they should be worn, and even how and who will enforce this law.

What we do know is that shops and supermarkets will be expected to encourage customers to comply with this law, and could even refuse entry to anyone that is not compliant. 

It remains unknown yet how much of a challenge this will prove to be, in particular for small independent shop owners. What we do know, however, is that Coronavirus signage has already helped alert customers for the need to adhere to current UK Guidelines, such as the need to maintain a safe 2m social distance for example. 

To help shop owners, and supermarkets alike reinforce the need to wear face coverings, face mask signage such as face masks must be worn signs are now available to buy. 

The Reason For Wearing Face Coverings

The UK Government currently states that “face coverings are mainly intended to protect others, not the wearer, from coronavirus (COVID-19) they are not a replacement for social distancing and regular hand washing”. 

With this in mind all businesses, not just shops and supermarkets, need to continue to ensure that social distancing signage such as a 2m distance sign and or social distancing floor stickers are still prominently displayed too. 

For more information, please refer to the UK Government’s official guidance on face covering.

Please also note that all information contained within this article is correct at the time of publishing.