Call for greater supermarket safety

Published Wednesday, 06 January 2021

The Leader of Coventry City Council has joined a regional call to increase COVID-19 safety measures in supermarkets and other businesses that remain open during the lockdown.

Cllr George Duggins and the six other local authority leaders in the West Midlands are calling for urgent action to help combat the rising number in infections. 

They first wrote to Business Secretary Alok Sharma MP in November expressing concerns at the easing of safety measures in supermarkets.

Now, with cases continuing to rise across the region and the UK entering a new lockdown, they have renewed their call to protect shoppers and store staff.

Cllr Duggins said: "Supermarkets and their staff worked extremely hard during the first lockdown to introduce measures that kept shoppers and workers safe.

“Now we need a return to the measures and the vigilance we saw last year and that means sanitising, enforcement of the rules around face coverings and better social distancing, including the reintroduction of one-way systems. 

“These are very worrying times and it is essential that stores are as safe as possible." 

Council leaders believe retailers have a major role to play in keeping people safe over the coming weeks and months and have called for measures including: 

  • The re-introduction of one-way systems to help maintain social distancing in all retail settings.  
  • Strict compliance with issues such as mask wearing, numbers of customers and sanitising touch points along with trolleys and baskets
  • Improved enforcement of safety measures, with COVID marshals on-site throughout opening hours.  
  • Strong Infection Prevention and Control and messaging in-store to maintain the 2m distance between customers.  
  • Strong action to combat spread amongst staff whist on-site (both in public areas and in break areas) including encouraging staff to test regularly through LFT centres  
  • Mandatory measures to ensure that symptomatic staff stay at home (with adequate financial support), get tested, self-isolate and that their close contacts also do this.  
  • Clear staff training.

For all the latest guidelines and advice, visit our Coronavirus webpages.

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