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Covid-19: Masks - Question for Short Debate

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 4:39 pm on 11th June 2020.

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Photo of Baroness Massey of Darwen Baroness Massey of Darwen Labour 4:39 pm, 11th June 2020

My Lords, there is evidence that wearing a mask can reduce the risk of transmitting and succumbing to infection. The most precise that I have seen is from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which states that if a Covid carrier wears a mask and a close contact also does so, the risk of contagion is a mere 1.5%. I wonder why the Government are not giving more clarity on the use of masks. I also wonder whether there have been discussions on potential protection from masks making school openings possible. It may be difficult to insist that younger children wear masks, but surely older pupils and staff can. This will be essential if lessons cannot be outside or classrooms cannot have good ventilation. Will the Government, while relaxing some of the measures, enforce the wearing of masks more widely? The wearing of masks is an important issue, and I thank my noble friend for raising it.