James O'Brien despairs at UK as caller in Portugal "can't imagine" life without masks

15 July 2020, 13:24 | Updated: 15 July 2020, 13:39

By Seán Hickey

This caller in Portugal told LBC that the UK is "weeks and months" behind Portugal in its coronavirus reaction.

James O'Brien was speaking to a caller living in the Algarve who was baffled at the UK's policy on face masks.

"You couldn't imagine trying to enter a supermarket or a place of business without either having a face mask" he began. "In our case we have an office where we provide face masks and hand sanitiser for people so if people forget their face mask we have to provide that for them and we do."

"You wouldn't think of not going somewhere without a face mask" the caller told him, which was where he couldn't believe the UK's policy on face masks to date.

James was wondering about people who have refused this far to wear masks in public, asking "is there genuinely a conspiracy theory out there that wearing a face mask would somehow harm you?"

The caller explained that his dentist and another friend of his have fallen victim to false information which shocked him. "You can even see there's spelling mistakes in it" he said.

The caller said the UK is weeks behind Portugal in its coronavirus response
The caller said the UK is weeks behind Portugal in its coronavirus response. Picture: PA

James couldn't make sense of people skeptical of face masks, adding that "even if it was not perfect they still have to file it under 'what harm is it going to do.'"

The caller couldn't believe how far behind the UK was in comparison to other European countries. "Here in Portugal we are weeks and months ahead of the UK in terms of our reaction" he said.

When James asked where did the skepticism for face masks come from, the caller told him that anti-vaxx people have been at the centre of the anti face mask saga.

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