Search icon


09th Oct 2020

MP spotted cleaning her glasses with her mask in Parliament

Wil Jones

That’s not what the mask for

A Labour MP has been spotted cleaning her glasses with her mask in the House of Commons.

Siobhain McDonagh was seen rubbing her spectacles with the mask during a debate on planning reforms on Thursday.

The clip went viral on social media, and the response was understandably not great.

“At this point I give up,” said one Twitter user. “What the f*** is this?” added another.

Siobhain McDonagh is the Member of Parliament for Mitcham and Morden. She has held the seat since 1997.

In England, people are currently required to wear a mask while on public transport, in stations and transport hubs, shops, entertainment venues, and many other indoor public spaces.

Advice on the government website regarding face masks says:

  • avoid touching the part of the face covering in contact with your mouth and nose, as it could be contaminated with the virus
  • change the face covering if it becomes damp or if you’ve touched it
  • avoid taking it off and putting it back on a lot in quick succession

In regards to wearing face coverings at a work place, the advice states that “employers should assess the use of face coverings on a case by case basis depending on the workplace environment.”

The police can take measures “if members of the public do not comply with [face covering laws] without a valid exemption”.

Police and Transport for London (TfL) officers can issue fines of £200 for a first offence (reduced to £100 if they are paid within 14 days).

The fines can then double for multiple offences – for instance, you can then be fined £400 for a second offence, £800 for a third offence, all the way up to a maximum value of £6,400.

Exemptions to the rules include “people who cannot put on, wear or remove a face covering because of a physical or mental illness or impairment, or disability,” and children under eleven.


Face Masks