The mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, released the guidance on Wednesday under the familiar slogan “My mask protects you, your mask protects me”.
BREAKING: Face coverings will remain compulsory on @TfL.— Sadiq Khan (@SadiqKhan) July 14, 2021
The wearing of face coverings helps reduce the spread of Covid, and crucially gives Londoners confidence to travel - vital to our economic recovery.
My mask protects you, your mask protects me.https://t.co/p26mPrF82F
Khan has been adamant about the retention of the face covering measure as part of a roadmap out of the pandemic. London is the first English city to reverse the decision on mask wearing, following an update from the government saying that mask use will no longer be compulsory on public transport.
"As long as the virus is still with us, and as long as we're still concerned about the virus being transmitted, we will make it compulsory”, Khan said.
The London mayor’s office referred to the WHO guidance that even double-vaccinated people should continue to wear face coverings in view of highly contagious variants, such as Delta.
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan says continuing to wear face coverings on transport in London is the 'most unselfish thing you can do' and says it 'adds an additional layer of protection and reassurance'.— Sky News (@SkyNews) July 14, 2021
Read more: https://t.co/3fd0NUod4X pic.twitter.com/NXP5Ak0Kmf
Londoners have overall been good at face mask compliance, according to Transport for London (TfL). Its research has shown that 86 percent of customers say they are wearing face coverings at all times on public transport services.
The provisions of the so-called “Freedom Day” in England include the removal of the majority of legal restrictions and a gradual return to workplaces as opposed to working from home. The government has recommended that the public use the NHS COVID Pass in high-risk settings, such as large events.
Those who test positive for COVID-19 will still be legally required to self-isolate. Quarantine rules will also remain for all those travelling from a red list country, and for amber list countries unless double vaccinated.
An update on travel restrictions is expected in the next 48 hours, with hopes in the tourism sector that Cyprus will be moved from amber to the green list.