Councillors buy washable masks for those on low incomes

With face masks becoming compulsory in many public places from today, two Broadland District Councillors will be using their unwanted allowances to make sure that people on low incomes can have reusable face coverings.

Natasha Harpley, district councillor for Sprowston Central ward said: “I was horrified to learn how expensive disposable ones are (roughly £8 for a pack of five in most supermarkets) and obviously not great for the environment either.

“There will always be the temptation for those who are struggling financially to re-use disposable masks and so I wanted to help prevent that from happening.

“So myself and fellow Sprowston Central councillor Breanne Cook have pooled our unwanted councillor allowances, as we do every month, and created a fund to support those on low incomes to be able to purchase washable cotton ones.”

Natasha and Breanne have teamed up with local business 2SENmums, who will make the masks and deliver them in Sprowston. In addition to this, 10pc of all sales will be donated to domestic abuse charity Leeway.

The fund will help anyone on a low income and will work on an honesty policy.

Natasha added: “We are trusting that only people who genuinely can’t afford to pay will use this fund and that it won’t be abused.”

To let them know you would like a mask, visit www.2SENmums.com to choose your fabric and then message their Facebook page to order, quoting “Labour Masks”. The scheme is limited to those living in Sprowston and is restricted to one mask per family member.

“Your order will be directly with 2SENmums, not us – we will simply fund the cost from a set budget and we won’t even know who you are. We wanted to do it this way so people can have maximum autonomy over their order whilst still maintaining privacy.”

The pair have also bought 20 masks from another maker, which will be distributed via the Food Hub.

Face coverings are now compulsory in indoor public areas such as shops, supermarkets, shopping centres, banks, post offices, train and bus stations and airports.

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