Welsh government publishes guidance for retailers to curb highly transmissible Omicron variant

UK grocery shoppers set to splash
iStock image

The Welsh Government has published the updated Retail Action Card, which relates to the measures retail premises must take, by law, in response to the coronavirus pandemic and in particular the emergence of the highly transmissible Omicron variant.

Those directly responsible for the premises, in most instances the General Manager or the owner of the business operating from the premises, are required to take reasonable measures to minimise the risk of employees and customers being exposed to coronavirus, and spreading the virus, at their premises.

With the move to Alert Level 2, this now includes

  • taking all reasonable measures to ensure that 2m social distancing is observed on the premises (including while waiting indoors to enter the premises)
  • entry is controlled and social interactions in the store are limited by ensuring that no more than 6 people from different households attend as a group not counting any persons under the age of 11 or any carer of a person in the group.

As a basis for deciding what measures should be taken, the responsible person must also carry out a specific assessment of the risk posed by coronavirus to provide focus on urgent risks of exposure.

The Welsh Government has produced a standard template for coronavirus risk assessments, and there are is further information available to support you provided by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE).

What reasonable measures should retailers consider taking to minimise the risk of exposure to coronavirus?

  • Social distancing
  • Limit capacity/Prevent over-crowding
  • Wearing face coverings 
  • Keep your premises clean
  • Manage the use of customer changing rooms
  • Manage returns, exchanges and collection of Goods
  • Offer and encourage home deliveries
  • Look after your staff
  • Help Test, Trace, Protect