Guidance for branches on purchasing face coverings

If branches wish to purchase face coverings, they must not be branded and it must be clear that that are not PPE and should not be worn for work

UNISON has had enquiries from branches for guidance about purchasing face coverings to give out to members, or potential members, as a promotional item.

It is important to remember that face coverings are not personal protective equipment (PPE). They are not designed to protect the wearer from infectious agents, but to protect others. Reusable cloth face coverings must be washed before and after each use.

It is suggested that branches use our licensed supplier of promotional items, TC Branding Group. This ensures that products and services meet UNISON’s strict supplier and code of conduct criteria. TC Branding Group is able to provide cloth face coverings for non-work use.

If branches do buy face coverings, they must be given to members with the clear instruction they are not for work use. They must not be used for work purposes under any circumstances. They must not be UNISON-branded. This is important to protect the union.

Please make sure that wherever you are promoting these items – whether on your branch website, social media or in other branch communications – you also make clear that these are for non-work use only.

All branches should follow this guidance going forward. If branches have previously purchased face coverings from other providers, they should not be UNISON branded – only non-branded face coverings should be distributed, and this needs to be done in accordance with this guidance.