The COVID-19 pandemic is not the first time people have been required to wear face masks for protection. Mask-wearing has a long history, and reflects society's sense of shared responsibility.
Policies meant to improve public health – like mandatory face masks during the coronavirus pandemic – need to take into account how people might adjust other behaviors in response.
Psychologists call these traits the 'Big Five': openness, conscientiousness, extroversion, agreeableness and neuroticism. A researcher suggests your profile implies your response to social distancing.
In the coronavirus pandemic, wearing a protective mask signifies a commitment to the social and collective good of society. But that changes when a face mask is worn by Black and racialized people.