In an effort to help those who are deaf or have hearing loss, individuals across the UK are creating inclusive face coverings that feature a transparent layer across the mouth. By making the lips visible, those who rely on lip-reading and seeing facial expressions will still be able to communicate.
While wearing a face covering isn't mandatory everywhere in the UK, the government has advised that they should be worn "in enclosed public spaces where social distancing isn't possible". From June 15, you will have to wear one if you plan on travelling on public transport. But there's been no clear guidance on how "the twelve million people across the UK who have some sort of hearing loss" will be impacted, as Ayla Ozmen, Head of Research & Policy at charity Action for Hearing Loss explained in a press statement.
"This move has the potential to create further isolation amongst an already marginalised community of people. We want to ensure that people with hearing loss can communicate whilst also protecting themselves and others," she said.
Thankfully, many creative individuals up and down the country have taken to creating their own inclusive masks with transparent panels to aid communication. Here are some of the places you can buy these masks to help the wider community.