Conservative MP Desmond Swayne has used the word “monstrous” to describe the idea of being made to wear a mask when he goes to his local supermarket.
Yet for months, workers in the NHS and social care have been wearing layers of PPE, including visors, during eight-hour shifts, for days on end. They did it in order to reduce the spread of coronavirus.
If an MP cannot lead by example after all of the sacrifices that have been made by so many, then it really proves we are not “in this together”, no matter what the Government says.
Mask refuseniks lack perspective. A small piece of fabric over your mouth isn’t that much of an infringement — not compared to another lockdown. Remember the pictures shared by doctors of painful welts on their faces after hours in hot, uncomfortable PPE? Wearing a mask to the shops is far from that, especially when it signifies that we are all in this together, being as careful as we can. And it’s an easy way to show you care. If you really don’t like masks, wear a bandana like Amber Heard.
Susannah Butter, Comment Editor
Sluggish growth is not a new issue
News yesterday that the economy is returning to growth a lot slower than expected is concerning and reflects underlying structural issues that this crisis has only exacerbated — for example low productivity, high dependency on low-skill service sector jobs, regional imbalance, and weak social mobility.
The Government must now deliver support in key areas, including directing skills training towards jobs and sectors with real-wage growth potential, and designing appropriate measures to support SMEs and new start-ups.
Dr Ian Selby