Justine Bate, right, and her custom-made face masks. Images: Facebook/Justine DB

LOOK: Deaf mom creates face masks with mouth window for lip reading

May 31st, 2020

A Deaf mother has created face masks with clear mouth windows to make lip reading possible while staying protected amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Justine Bate from the United Kingdom also made the masks so that she and her Deaf 10-year-old daughter Teona could communicate easily, as per the New York Post last Thursday, May 28.

Along with her daughter, Justine’s husband, Carl wears the masks as well.  The Bate family has received orders from care homes and people in the Deaf community since Justine posted the masks on her Facebook page on May 25.

Been up since 6am making this masks – myself and my daughter are deaf, we rely heavily on lip reading, this Visible…

Posted by Justine DB on Monday, May 25, 2020

Justine, who is a graphic designer, has already sold 42 pieces for 5.99 pounds (about $7 or P370) each, inclusive of packing and postal expenses, as of May 27.

Meanwhile, Carl pointed out that they have also received messages from caregivers of people with dementia and children with autism. According to the report, the patients are “actually scared” of others that have full face masks on.

“They look a bit different but it is the interests of the patient that is important,” Carl was quoted as saying, referring to the masks. “You can look stupid but as long as your patient is feeling calm it is a benefit for that person.”

The masks are not “PPE quality” since they do not have filters, but caregivers said they are “not bothered because of the ability to communicate with disabled people in an easier way.”

While the amount of orders has been “overwhelming” for the couple, Carl said that the masks have also helped bring the Deaf community together. He added, “She’s loving the fact that she’s helping others make a better quality of life in this situation.” JB


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