Face mask exempt badges
Euan’s Guide badges and cards are for disabled people that can’t wear a face covering or mask. They do not make you exempt from wearing a face covering, but help you to indicate to other people that you are exempt. Please follow Government guidance to determine if you are exempt from wearing a face covering or face mask:
Please only use or request our badges and cards if you are a disabled person who is exempt from wearing a face covering according to Government guidance or on behalf of a disabled person who is exempt from wearing a face covering according to Government guidance. Our Face Mask Exempt badges and downloads are not designed to be proof to grant you exemption from wearing a face covering. They are designed to help you to indicate your exempt status.
If you can wear a mask or face covering, then please do.
If you wish to request a badge to be sent out in the post, this will take around 10 days to arrive, or you can download and print resources from this webpage.
Face Mask Exempt badge
We have already sent out over 17,000 badges. There is clearly massive demand for the badges, and we would like to supply a badge to every disabled person that needs one. It is important for us to keep supplying these badges for free for disabled people that need them. However, we are a small charity, and we are asking people to donate if they can so that we can continue to offer badges for as long as they are required. It is costing us around £3 to send out a single badge.
To help support us, please consider donating or helping in another way to help cover the costs. Here are some different ways you can help us:
- Donate. Donating helps us cover some of the costs involved. It is costing us £15 to send out badges to five people, so if you can pay it forward you will help ensure we can keep offering badges for longer.
- Start reviewing places you visit (when it is safe to do so). Find out more about reviewing on Euan’s Guide.
- Tell people about us! Spread the word on social media and let people know about us and the work that we do. You can tag us using @EuansGuide or use #EuansGuide.
- Join our Red Cord Card campaign to help raise awareness of the importance of red emergency cords and make accessible toilets across the UK safer.
If you do not want to wait for a badge to be delivered, we have downloadable resources which you can print to wear or carry with you to help indicate that you are exempt.
We have a printout for making your own DIY Face Mask Exempt badges. These could either be stuck on to existing badges or attached to a piece of card and a safety pin and worn as a badge.
We have a printout which can be cut and folded to attach to a lanyard.
We also have small wallet sized cards which you can print and take with you.
Face covering rules and guidance (last updated Thursday 24 September 2020)
As different rules and guidelines apply across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland we are asking everyone to read the relevant Government’s policy and guidance before using or requesting our resources. You will find links to their webpages below.
In England it is now a legal requirement to wear a face covering in all indoor public premises. This includes (but is not limited to) shops, public transport, libraries, salons, attraction and entertainment venues and public areas in hotels. A detailed list of places can be found in the government's guidance for England. From the 24th of September, a face covering must be worn in premises providing hospitality (bars, pubs, restaurants, cafes), except when seated at a table to eat or drink. The guidance also states that there are circumstances where people may not be able to wear a face covering. Find out more about the exemptions on their website.
In Scotland it is a legal requirement to wear a face covering in all indoor public premises such as shops, public transport and public transport premises, pubs, restaurants and cafes (when not seated), libraries, cinemas, salons, gyms and places of worship. For a full list of venues requiring a face covering to be worn, please review the government’s guidance for Scotland. Similarly, they recognise it is not possible for everyone to wear a face covering and in the guidance you can find out who is exempt from this rule and in what circumstances you may be exempt.
It is now a legal requirement to wear a face covering in Wales in all indoor public places. These are required to be worn by both customers and staff. This includes (but is not limited to) shops, salons, cinemas, museums, gyms and public transport. Face coverings should be worn in parts of cafes and restaurants when food and drink is not being consumed. Take a look at the guidance for Wales, including details of the reasonable excuses they acknowledge for not wearing a face covering.
All passengers and staff on public transport must wear a face covering in Northern Ireland. From 10 August the use of face coverings when you are in a public area indoors, such as in a shop when social distancing is not possible, will be mandatory in Northern Ireland. Follow the link to find the guidance for Northern Ireland, including their list of 'reasonable excuse' when an individual does not need to wear a face covering.
Frequently asked questions
Should I wear a mask?
Yes, anyone who can wear a mask should wear a mask. Our badges and printouts are only for people who are exempt from wearing a face covering. Check the Government guidelines to see if this applies to you.
Do these badges and printouts make me exempt from wearing a face covering?
No. If you think that you are exempt from wearing a face covering, please check the Government guidance. If you feel that you are exempt based on the Government guidance, and are based in the UK then you are welcome to use these resources. These badges and printouts are not designed to act as official proof that the wearer is exempt from wearing a face covering. If you feel that you are exempt from wearing a face covering, these resources are designed for you to help show or tell other people.
What happens if someone requests a badge who is not exempt?
We clearly state that these badges and printouts are for people who consider themselves to be exempt from wearing a face covering. Requesting a badge or using the printouts unnecessarily is despicable. Anyone who does that will not only be wasting our small charity’s resources but making the lives of people who cannot legitimately wear a face mask much worse. We have to rely on goodwill that these will only be used by individuals who require them. We feel that the benefit to our users outweigh the risks and hope that the minority don’t ruin it for the majority.
Are they “legal”?
No. At the time of writing there is currently no legal requirement to prove you don’t need to wear a face covering. The resources are a safe and easily identifiable way to indicate to people that you are not able to wear a face covering. These badges and printouts are not designed to act as official proof that the wearer is exempt from wearing a mask, but have been designed to prevent unnecessary harassment. We encourage everyone to read the relevant Government guidance for more information.
We are not the only ones offering identifiers to help you let people know you are exempt from having to wear a face covering. The following services are providing resources which you can download, request or purchase:
- Gov.uk has resources you can download and show on your mobile or print and carry with you
- Transport for London cards
- Brighton and Hove Buses cards
- West Midlands Network have a card you can print or show on your phone and a badge you can order
- First Bus cards
- Stagecoach cards
- Arriva cards
- Nexus journey cards
- Disability Equality Scotland
- The Access Card
- British Lung Foundation downloadable graphic
- Keep Safe have produced learning disability, autism and parent and child cards.
- Or you can purchase a face covering exempt card to clip onto your Hidden Disabilities lanyard from The Hidden Disabilities Sunflower Lanyard Scheme®
Have we missed someone? If you know if any other places providing people with face covering exempt cards or anything similar please just let us know.