Boris Johnson praised for ending lockdown by Mark Dolan
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Boris Johnson revealed the Government will remove the legal obligation to wear a face-covering from July 19 in his speech to the nation on Monday. Following Mr Johnson’s declaration, Express.co.uk asked in an exclusive online poll: “Will you still wear a mask if it’s no longer compulsory from July 19?” In response, 1,620 (50 percent) claimed they will continue to wear a mask following the July 19 date.
In contrast, 1,409 (43 percent) voted they would not continue to wear a face-covering while 222 were not sure.
From July 19, the legal obligation for wearing a mask in hospitality venues and on transport will be removed although the Government will issue guidance where it is advisable.
Mr Johnson said this week: “Guidance will suggest where you might choose to do so – especially when cases are rising and where you come into contact with people you don’t usually meet in enclosed spaces, such as obviously crowded public transport.
“Clearly there’s a big difference between travelling on a crowded Tube train and sitting late at night in a virtually empty carriage on the main railway line.
“We want people to exercise their personal responsibility but remember the value of face coverings both in protecting themselves and others.”
While the legal obligation will be lifted, the UK’s chief scientific and medical advisers both indicated there will be incidences where there is advice for face masks to be worn.
Sir Patrick Vallance, chief scientific adviser, added: “Masks are most effective at preventing somebody else catching the disease from you.
“They have some effect to prevent you catching it as well.
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“The situation you’re most likely to catch Covid in is indoors, crowded spaces.
“So that’s the obvious place where mask-wearing becomes an advantage.”
New Health Secretary Sajid Javid, claimed he will continue to wear a mask if on crowded public transport.
He did, however, reveal he would not do so when there are a small number of people in the carriage.
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He said: “If I was on a crowded tube in London I would wear a mask.
“If I was on the West Coast mainline going up to my constituency and it’s late at night and there are about three people in the carriage, even if it said ‘we recommend a mask’, I wouldn’t wear a mask.”
From July 19, all legal obligations will be lifted by the Government although a final review of the data will take place next week.
Labour Party officials, however, have claimed lifting all restrictions is a reckless move by the Prime Minister.
Sir Keir Starmer said: “To throw off all protections at the same time when the infection rate is still going up is reckless.
“We need a balanced approach, we need to keep key protections in place, including masks, including ventilation and crucially, something we’ve been asking for through the pandemic, proper payments to those who need to self-isolate.”
According to the Government’s latest figures, 28,773 new cases were reported today.
A further 37 deaths were also reported with a total of 142 reported in the week between June 30 to July 6.
That overall death count is 20.3 percent higher than the previous week while 406 patients were also admitted on July 6.
The Express.co.uk poll ran from around 2pm on Monday, July 5 to around 3pm on Tuesday, July 6.
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