This Morning guest claims children wearing face masks in schools ‘causes harm’
25 August 2020, 11:16 | Updated: 25 August 2020, 11:17
Liz Cole has blasted Scotland’s decision to make face masks in schools mandatory.
A guest on This Morning today started a fierce debate after she slammed the idea that children should wear masks at school.
Earlier today, it was confirmed that secondary pupils in Scotland will have to wear face coverings when moving through corridors and other communal areas from next week.
But guest Liz Cole has blasted the decision, claiming there is evidence this could cause more harm than good.
Speaking to hosts Ruth Langsford and Eamonn Holmes, Liz said: “I want to know, what is the evidence that face masks in schools work?
“Evidence is weak and it could actually increase the risk of transmission because teenagers made to wear a mask all day will be touching their faces.”
Liz has even started a petition asking the government not to make masks mandatory for children in primary or secondary schools in the UK.
“We know children are not driving the transmission,” she continued, adding: “We’ve seen data coming out, there is only small number of outbreaks in schools and this is often staff to staff.
“There is weak evidence for the benefit and it could actually increase the risk of transmission, so it makes no sense to me.”
However, student Livi Cooper and her mum Catherine were quick to disagree, as they appeared via video link to insist the advice from the World Health Organisation is in favour of masks.
Catherine said: “WHO is recommending that children over 12 should wear masks if they cannot maintain one metre apart.
“We should be erring on the side of caution and following the best advice.”
She added: “Children will adapt and kids are less bothered by wearing them, they are very adaptable.
Catherine later pointed out that parents might be scared to send children back to school if others aren’t wearing masks.
This comes after Professor Russell Viner, a member of the Government’s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), said there was concern about younger children wearing face coverings.
He told BBC: “The evidence on masks is very unclear. And, actually, I think that’s in one sense, potentially going beyond the evidence we have.
“There are lots of concerns about mask wearing for children, particularly younger children. Because they touch their face, they are constantly worried about the mask, it actually could, spread the virus more.”