Shopworkers trade union Usdaw has welcomed Morrisons agreeing new safety measures, including perspex screens, to help protect checkout operators during the Coronavirus emergency. Usdaw is working with other supermarket retailers to ensure that they meet their duty of care to staff.

Paddy Lillis, Usdaw General Secretary says:
“We have increasing concerns about the safety and welfare of staff in stores. The scenes in stores over the weekend and behaviour of
some customers mean that supermarkets need to go further to protect the health, safety and welfare of shopworkers.

“We are calling on retailers to continue to improve their stores and procedures to help protect staff. We also call on customers to stay calm, respect shopworkers and practice the necessary hygiene measures to help limit the spread of the virus. We all have to work together to get through this crisis.”

Usdaw is calling on retailers to:
• Limit the number of customers in store at any one time
• Increase security presence
• Reiterate to staff not to put their own safety at risk in the event of abusive customers or
shoplifters
• Provide perspex shields around checkouts
• Ensure staff are able to perform necessary hygiene procedures
• Clearly tell customers they should shop alone if possible and only buy what they need
• Enforce essential workers’ and vulnerable people’s shopping hours.

Usdaw is urging customers to please help retail workers by:
• treating shopworkers with courtesy & respect
• washing your hands first
• only buying what you need
• maintaining physical distance
• paying with contactless if you can
• respecting ‘golden’ shopping hours for essential workers and vulnerable people
• shopping alone if possible.

Usdaw (Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers) is the UK’s fifth biggest trade union with over 400,000 members. Membership has increased by more than one-third over the last couple of decades. Most Usdaw members work in the retail sector, but the union also has many members in transport, distribution, food manufacturing, chemicals and other trades.

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