MASKS will soon be compulsory in offices and enclosed work spaces throughout France in a bid to fight off a second coronavirus wave.
The new rule will come into place next month after cases spiked in France, particularly among people aged between 25 and 35.
Official figures have revealed around a quarter of new infection “clusters” were formed in the workplace[/caption]
There is evidence that the virus is thriving in particular age groups and was spreading rapidly among those ages 25 to 35[/caption]
Last week the country saw 16,546 new cases recorded, compared to a rise of 11,251 the week before.
The French government have said people returning from summer holidays will be required to cover their faces in all enclosed work spaces – including corridors and lobbies.
France has already made it madatory to wear masks on public transport and in enclosed shared public spaces like shopping malls and government offices – but has left mask wearing up to the discretion of employers.
More than 30,400 people have died from Covid-19 in the country, one of the highest death tolls in the world.
The French health ministry said there was evidence that the virus was thriving in particular age groups and was spreading rapidly among those aged 25 to 35.
However, the number of people hospitalised with Covid-19 has been rising among the over 40s, according to the ministry.
Experts have urged the government to make masks compulsory in all confined spaces – including classrooms and to “unambiguously encourage” remote working.
Labour Minister Elisabeth Borne said the government will continue recommending people in highly affected areas work from home.
Employers will be asked to foot the bill for staff masks.
Official figures have revealed around a quarter of new infection “clusters” were formed in the workplace.
Another concern for the country, and the rest of the world, is that nearly half the people who have tested positive for Covid-19 display no symptoms, meaning they could have unknowingly helped the disease to spread.
This comes as riot police were sent to the Marseille region yesterday to enforce mask-wearing and help to quash a worrying spike in cases.
The French government deployed 130 gun-toting cops to the port city and the surrounding area in a tough new clampdown.
Paris expanded its mask requirements Saturday, and other towns around France started requiring masks outdoors on Monday.
Infections have been rising across the country in recent days, with more than 3,000 new cases reported on Sunday.
It was one of the highest daily spikes since the country lifted a strict two-month lockdown in May.
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On Monday, French President Emmanuel Macron urged the nation to be vigilant ‘in the face of an accelerating’ outbreak.
This was a crisis, he said, which ‘requires that we protect each other, that we are each responsible for all’, even as some people remain reluctant to wear a mask.