Ahead of the reopening of more businesses including pubs, restaurants and cafes this Saturday (4 July), Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) is reminding retailers of the resources available to them on key areas of the business like age restricted sales, social distancing, and managing abuse.
From 4 July, the Government guidance on social distancing will also change to allow businesses to implement a 1m+ policy if they’re not able to keep to 2m, with the plus referring to additional mitigations like the installation of screens, wearing of face coverings and ensuring that people do not interact face to face.
ACS chief executive James Lowman (pictured) said, “Convenience stores have been there throughout the pandemic, keeping communities going while other businesses have been forced to close their doors. As we move into the next phase of reopening, it’s essential that customers continue to treat the people working in stores with respect.”
ACS’ Covid-19 Impact Survey shows that forecourts, city centre stores and those near transport hubs are the businesses that are most likely to have been negatively affected by the lockdown.
The survey also shows that since the start of lockdown, 40% of stores have seen an increase in violence and verbal abuse, both between customers and from customers directed toward colleagues.
ACS has been working with the Home Office to ensure that incidents of abuse are reported to the police when they occur, and has encouraged the Government to publish the response to its call for evidence on violence and abuse in retail as soon as possible.
COVID-19 related resources for retailers are available here: https://www.acs.org.uk/advice/covid-19-coronavirus