Closed petition Ban wearing face coverings in public places.

Very recently the Sri Lankan and Tunisian governments have banned full face coverings and coverings where only the eyes can be seen in public places for security reasons. We should too.

This petition is closed All petitions run for 6 months

16,983 signatures

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Government responded

This response was given on 27 July 2020

The Government does not support a general ban on the wearing of face coverings in public.

Read the response in full

Face coverings have a variety of legitimate purposes and as such the Government does not support a general ban on face coverings in public, including the wearing of the veil.

The Police already have powers under section 60AA of the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 to seize materials being used to hide someone’s face when the police have reason to believe that they are being, or could be, worn wholly or mainly for the purposes of concealing identity (in connection with, or in anticipation of, the commission of an offence). These powers are designed particularly for public order situations, such as protests, marches and demonstrations.

However, there clearly will be circumstances when covering the face would be inappropriate, and institutions such as hospitals, schools, courts and the border force, as well as employers more generally, are free to set their own policies. So we support the right of individual organisations such as these to restrict the wearing of face coverings through legitimate dress codes, or for instance reasons of security, identification or health and safety.

Home Office