25 Sep 2020

Do you have to wear a face covering if you have screens installed in your retail space?

The Government made it compulsory for retail and showroom staff to wear a face covering from yesterday (Thursday, September 24).

However, if you have already installed physical screens at points of sale, is it still necessary to wear a face mask?

A number of members of our parent company Bira contacted our team to ask for guidance on this matter, so we called the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) for clarification and the short answer is ‘no’.

The statement confirmed this: “Face coverings must be worn by retail, leisure and hospitality staff working in indoor areas which are open to the public and where they are likely to come into contact with a member of the public, for example shops, supermarkets and restaurants.

“If these businesses have taken steps in line with HSE guidance for Covid-19-Secure workplaces to create a physical barrier between workers and members of the public then staff behind the barrier will not be required to wear a face covering.”

Other exemptions to the rule is if retail staff are not in a customer-facing environment (such as a stock room); if they have a hidden disability or another health condition; or if they are with someone who relies on lip reading to communicate with them.

Read the Government’s full guidance here