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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

I wonder whether I'm alone in wondering whose job it is to enforce face mask wearing in shops.

For the second time in a week, on a visit to a shop on Grand Parade, I've noticed that about half the customers weren't wearing masks. One of these also had a rather nasty sounding cough.

The police say I should talk to the shop staff, while the shop manager tells me they are not in a position to enforce the law.

Where does that leave us? I would like to think that we're all doing our bit.

Tags for Forum Posts: coronavirus

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In France to not wear a mask inareas wher etehy are compulsory, you need a medical certificate not a self-certified one as in England.

On the bus the other day, the lady in front of me boarded the bus with no mask, she was coughing on and off and just before she got off, she pulled a very dirty mask out of her handbag and proceded to wipe her very sweaty face down with it.

Go solve that one!

Saw an item on the news today in which business owners were complaining that people just weren’t coming back to their shops and that footfall is low. If they were to encourage mask wearing, people might feel safer . Not enforcing the law could mean they are shooting themselves in the foot. For example  I refuse to shop in Sainsbury’s because it is so haphazard in there. Shop owners don’t have to be heavy handed about it. I was in a shop today and the assistant called out to someone entering: can you put your mask on, please?’ The customer did

Why don't shops confront shoppers not wearing masks ?

Here's why.

USDAW reports that in the week after wearing of masks was made obligatory in shops reports of  incidents of violence against shop workers doubled.

" Peter Denys, a store manager at a branch of Co-op Food in central London, says the situation ( abuse of shop workers ) is far worse than the statistics show.

He told Sky News: "It happens on a daily basis - some days you can have three or four incidents.

"People threaten us with bottles, knives, syringes and with COVID coming on, spitting. So they're just using whatever tools they've got."

In many cases, the violence stems from customers being asked to adhere to social distancing guidelines. "

Thanks for that John.  I think if we’re expecting people working in shops to enforce this we should show our support by being willing to do the same and call out people who are flouting the rules.  I did it on the 221 bus yesterday when a numpty got on after me without a mask.  I asked him if he’d forgotten to put his on, when he said that he had I suggested in the strongest possible terms that he get off the bus.


Walking through Wood Green it seems like there is no pandemic in this locality - most pedestrians not wearing masks despite the streets being extremely busy, but granted it is not compulsory to wear masks except inside shop premises, and definitely no attempts at distancing. In Argos 80 percent of customers (at a rough count) were not wearing masks even though staff were - when asked about challenging non-mask wearers, even with a security person at the door who could do this, the staff member said they were told not to do so because of potential aggressive customer behaviour. 

On Green Lanes it is the same, so there must be no pandemic in Green Lanes, too. The flagrant breaching of government and health guidelines and directives is endemic in this pandemic in this area, unfortunately, and has been so for months. The attitude is that rules are for other people. It is socially irresponsible, ignorant and selfish behaviour, and for some it will be a complete lack of understanding with no awareness of the rules in place.

There are virtually no shops insisting on in-shop mask wearing. Observing shop staff interaction with customers it is as though mask-wearing in shops is optional rather than compulsory. Harringay Local Shop is a noted exception and they are rigorous which is very good - they turn people away if not wearing masks and have attractive, locally made masks on sale at the door, and staff are all wearing them. Some shops have screens at the tills (incl Yasar Halim), while others do not. As Peter Piper notes, charity shops are also pretty good on this. And high street opticians have measures in place.

Although everybody wishes is was all over, it is not. When is reality going to kick in with enforcement or much better self-regulation, as it has done in several other countries, so that the spread of the pandemic can, at least,  be slowed down?

If its really as bad as you suggest and has been so "for months" then why haven't we seen worse coronavirus outcomes here? Genuine question.

I totally agree with your points Geoff. I haven't been to the Harringay Local Shop but might start if they treating this seriously in the way you describe. As to your last question I have no answers - hopefully it's not going to take another serious wave or lockdown.



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