THE transport secretary Grant Shapps has announced that a face covering will be compulsory on all public transport in England from 15 June.
He has also said that passengers on trains, trams, buses and ferries who ignore the new rule will be fined.
Labour shadow transport secretary Jim McMahon said: ‘This is just another example of the Government being slow to act. Two months ago, Labour immediately backed the Mayor of London’s call for face coverings on public transport to be compulsory. Yet only now Tory Ministers are acting.
‘Two months after first raising this with Government we are still yet to hear whether drivers will be issued with gloves, masks, and other PPE items as standard, what specification this PPE should be and, if there isn’t sufficient PPE, whether buses should still run.
‘We can’t go on like this. We need a comprehensive transport plan to get our public transport moving, to protect staff and to protect passengers.’
ASLEF general secretary Mick Whelan said: ‘We have been working closely with the government to ensure that agreed increases in services on Britain’s train and Tube network are done in a safe and controlled manner – to maintain social distancing for the safety of passengers and staff. The instruction to wear face coverings to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus will ease the concerns of people travelling and working on the transport network.’