PEOPLE won’t be made to wear face masks in bars and restaurants, the Environment Secretary said this morning.
Masks will be mandatory in shops from July 24 and anyone not wearing them will be handed a £100 fine – but George Eustice said this morning the rule wouldn’t apply when eating out.
Mr Eustice told Sky News: “We’re not for instance mandating the wearing of masks in pubs and restaurants, because obviously people have got to eat.”
The PM has been sporting a blue mask over the last few days to encourage others to do the same.
Mr Eustice tried to defend the Government’s delay on bringing the new measures in – which won’t come into effect until July 24 – by saying it was based on changing evidence.
He said: “Two things have been going on – evidence and understanding has been evolving, WHO changed its guidance back in June.
“We then loosened the lockdown and allowed more venues to open.
“We need to consider the mix of measures we have in place and control the virus.”
“I suspect from this announcement a lot of people will start wearing a face mask where they previously might not have done – and then it will become mandatory from the 24th.”
People will also have to wear a mask if they’re having a haircut, Mr Eustice said.
But, after sexism accusations over new rules which allow men to get their beard trimmed but rule out women getting their eyebrows done, Mr Eustice admitted people wouldn’t be able to wear masks all the time at the barber.
He said: “I think it’s pretty obvious that you could not have a mask on for a beard trim. There will be exceptions.
“We have been advising people to wear masks wherever possible.”
Boris Johnson yesterday said wearing a face mask while shopping is a vital “insurance policy” to stop Covid-19 exploding again.
The PM spoke out ahead of today’s announcement that masks will be compulsory in stores from July 24.
He said: “I do think in shops it is very important to wear a face covering if you are going to be in a confined space.
“You want to protect other people and receive protection in turn.
“Face coverings — I think people should be wearing them in shops.”