Woman wearing a face masks and eye covering

Are you concerned about the impact of face masks on deaf children and young people?

Many deaf children and adults are feeling anxious about face masks becoming the norm. They worry about communication becoming much harder and feeling more isolated as a result. In England face coverings are now mandatory on public transport, and from the 24th July they will also be mandatory in shops. But there are some important exemptions e.g.

  • children under the age of 11
  • if you are travelling with, or providing assistance to, someone who relies on lip reading to communicate.

Click below to be taken to the government guidance on who is exempt from wearing a face mask:


DIY face masks with clear panels could help too. But these will not be suitable in all situations so we’ll need to be more flexible, creative and patient in how we communicate with one another.

How you can help

1.Watch this short top tips video on communicating with deaf people when using a mask:

Face masks: tips for communicating with deaf children and young people

Lots of you have expressed your concerns about more people wearing face coverings in public and what this will mean for deaf children and young people. Please share our video, which has tips for communicating when masks are being worn. If you want to wear a mask, could you consider making one with a clear panel? – www.ndcs.org.uk/diyfacemasks

Posted by National Deaf Children's Society on Friday, 22 May 2020

2. Read the NDCS blog post on the impact of face masks on deaf children.


3. Have a go at making your own deaf-friendly face mask:

If any parents or volunteers would like to make and donate clear face masks for Lollipop to use when we are able to resume face-to-face activities, please let us know!

BSL video: https://bit.ly/2NsPPTN

A big thank you to NAD Lab, Middlesborough who have kindly donated face masks to Lollipop! https://nadlab.uk/

Blog author: Abigail Harvey

Mentor Supervisor for Lollipop