The Malta Independent 3 June 2020, Wednesday

Civil Society Network appeals for free masks for the public, mandatory use in public spaces

Thursday, 9 April 2020, 10:35 Last update: about 3 months ago

The Civil Society Network has appealed to the government to distribute masks to the general public free of charge, and for it to be mandatory for people to wear masks when in public places, or at least in urban areas.

They issued this request in a Facebook post in light of the recent surge in local transmission cases.

"This measure is being proposed after the new state of affairs, wherein local transmission is becoming more prevalent," they said, arguing that now is the moment where the risk of passing on the virus is highest in the street and in shops.

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Just today, two retail establishments have closed down due to employees getting infected, the network said.

This measure should resemble similar ones adopted in other EU states, namely the Czech Republic, where failing wearing a medical mask, the mouth and the nose should be covered by a scarf to provide minimal protection, the NGO said.

During press briefing last week, Superintendent for Public Health Charmaine Gauci was already asked if the health authorities will consider making face masks obligatory to wear in public, as is being done in other countries. She said that the health authorities are abiding by the World Health Organisations recommendations, but they are also following the coronavirus situation in other countries to see which measures are most effective in reducing the spread of the virus.

 

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