The production of thousands of reusable masks designed for school children has been stopped by the Central Union of Municipalities and Communities of Greece (KEDE) after the fiasco with the XXL-masks distributed by the Education Ministry on the first school day.
Ηundreds of pupils received oversized masks, neither functional nor effective in protecting the children and those around them from the coronavirus transmission.
The manufacturers will be going back to production once they receive new measurements from the Health Ministry.
The oversized masks were produced by a company that manufactures aluminum doors and shatters, media reported.
However, this was apparently not the main problem for the epic fail that flooded the social media and was mocked even on the state broadcaster.
Δημοσιογράφος της ΕΡΤ τρολάρει το φιάσκο με τις #μασκες_αλεξιπτωτα και φοράει "στον αέρα" τη #μάσκα.
Φήμες ότι ενημερώθηκε να περάσει από το λογιστήριο δεν έχουν επιβεβαιωθεί ακόμα. pic.twitter.com/Kjzz72vVzr
— ʍքǟȶɦǟֆ 💊 (@GiannisMpathas) September 15, 2020
The Health Ministry admitted that the orders for the three different mask sizes – one each for kindergarten and elementary school children, and a third for older students and adults – were badly worded and led to confusion.
One more problem was obviously that neither the manufacturer double-checked the dimensions, nor those officials who received the delivery made any control. The masks cost 6.5 million euros of public money.
On the following day, children went to school where the use of masks is compulsory with face protections provided by their parents.
When a father was asked by a TV reporter what did they do with the mask-parachute, he joked saying that they use it as underwear for the child.
On the sad side, a parent posted on social media what while majority of pupils were wearing masks given to them by their parents, some children still wore the oversized ones. In these economically difficult times, some parents cannot spear even a few euros to buy a mask for their child.
School children are being supplied with one reusable mask and a refillable water bottle as part of health safety protocols to contain the spread of the virus.
The initial government plan was to hand over 2 masks.
PS now, of course, the question is: who will pay for the new masks.