Face masks

Alert message sent 18/07/2020 12:23:00

Information sent on behalf of Cheshire Constabulary

Face mask information: Face coverings - how to make your own and how to wear them safely
Face coverings must be worn by members of the public on public transport, and from the 24th July, they must be worn in shops and supermarkets. The requirements will apply to everyone unless they qualify under one of the exemptions listed at the end of this email.
It is likely that there will be very high levels of demand for face coverings over the next few weeks: prices may rise and it is likely that scammers will place bogus adverts for masks that don’t exist, take your money and disappear.
The Big Community Sew website provides free downloadable patterns and instructions on how to make pleated and shaped face coverings. If you want to make your own, a tightly woven lightweight cotton is ideal: quilting cotton or poly cotton. You could even use an old pillowcase or shirt. Avoid stretchy fabrics, and synthetics that aren’t breathable. Wash and dry the fabric before you start.
Please note: the instructions are for making face coverings for your own use or to give to friends and family. If you want to make and sell face coverings you will be classed as a manufacturing business and you will have to comply with all trading standards consumer rights legislation as well as safety legislation. For more information visit the Government website  and the Chartered Trading Standards Institute's Business Companion.
Whether you are making your own face covering or buying one, make sure it:
covers your nose and mouth while allowing you to breathe comfortably
fits comfortably but securely against the side of the face
is secured to the head with ties or ear loops
is made of a material that you find to be comfortable and breathable, such as cotton
ideally includes at least two layers of fabric (the World Health Organisation recommends three depending on the fabric used)
unless disposable, is able to be washed with other items of laundry according to fabric washing instructions and dried without causing the face covering to be damaged
When wearing a face covering you should:
wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water for 20 seconds or use hand sanitiser before putting a face covering on
avoid wearing on your neck or forehead
avoid touching the part of the face covering in contact with your mouth and nose, as it could be contaminated with the virus
change the face covering if it becomes damp or if you’ve touched it
When removing a face covering:
wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water for 20 seconds or use hand sanitiser before removing
only handle the straps, ties or clips
do not share with someone else to use
if single-use, dispose of it carefully in a residual waste bin and do not recycle
if reusable, wash it in line with manufacturer’s instructions at the highest temperature appropriate for the fabric
wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water for 20 seconds or use hand sanitiser once removed
You do not need to wear a face covering if you have a legitimate reason not to. This includes:
young children under the age of 11
not being able to put on, wear or remove a face covering because of a physical or mental illness or impairment, or disability
if putting on, wearing or removing a face covering will cause you severe distress
if you are travelling with or providing assistance to someone who relies on lip reading to communicate
to avoid harm or injury, or the risk of harm or injury, to yourself or others
to avoid injury, or to escape a risk of harm, and you do not have a face covering with you
to eat or drink, but only if you need to
to take medication
if a police officer or other official requests you remove your face covering
There are also scenarios when you are permitted to remove a face covering when asked:
If asked to do so by shop staff for the purpose of age identification
If speaking with people who rely on lip reading, facial expressions and clear sound. Some may ask you, either verbally or in writing, to remove a covering to help with communication.
If you or somebody you know has been caught out by a scam or fraud please contact one of our specialist officers, Linda or Sue on 0151 511 8785 or 0151 511 8775, who are already working with people in Halton who have lost thousands of pounds to scams.
If you need advice on anything else please contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline  or 0808 223 1133

Kind regards
PCSO 21122 Maggie Sumner
Message sent by
Margaret Sumner (Police, PCSO, Widnes LPU)

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