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Social distancing - workplace guidance

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Guidance on Social Distancing for Public Premises and Workplaces during COVID-19 Pandemic

Fife Council Environmental Health are aware of the need for premises currently allowed to stay open such as takeaway and delivery food businesses, specific retail shops and other essential workplaces to keep trading to provide vital supplies to the public during these difficult times.

Employers should make themselves aware of current Government advice regarding the need to maintain a safe social distance to prevent any unnecessary spread of this virus. Please find below some guidelines which may assist you to continue to trade with these constraints in mind. View the current advice from the UK Government on social distancing.

As per this guidance, retail and public premises which we expect to remain open must:

  • Ensure a distance of 2 metres between customers and shop assistants
  • Let people enter the shop only in small groups, to ensure that spaces are not crowded
  • Queue control is required outside of shops and other essential premises that remain open
  • Increase sanitising of hand contact areas including but not limited to; door handles, trolleys, baskets, conveyer belts, card machines and checkout areas

Non-essential premises and businesses must now shut.

Further advice to meet these requirements:

Areas Open to the Public:

  • Limit the number of customers in store at any one time, consider placing signage in/outside the premises to inform customers.
  • Increase security presence where required, such as queue management (internal & external)
  • Reiterate to staff not to put their own safety at risk in the event of abusive customers or shoplifters
  • Provide suitable screening around checkouts where possible
  • Ensure staff perform necessary hygiene procedures and ensure frequent handwashing.
  • Clearly tell customers they should shop alone when possible and only buy what they need.
  • Enforce essential workers’ and vulnerable people’s shopping hours.
  • Maintain physical distance. Possible solutions may include to place tape marking out the recommended 2 metres exclusion on the shop floor area, thus ensuring that distance is maintained between staff and customers as far as practicable.
  • Accepting payment with contactless if you can, if not, have customers place money on counter and adhere to distancing guidelines during transactions.

Staff Only Areas/Other Workplaces:

  • As per Government guidelines employees should work remotely where possible and only attend the workplace when essential to do so.
  • Maintaining physical distance. Possible solutions may include to place tape marking out the recommended 2 metres exclusion on the production/work area as far as practicable; limiting the number of people in essential face to face meetings considering size of room, staff rest/welfare areas-preferably consider takeaway food service or how best to distance and/or restrict access time.
  • Ensure staff perform necessary hygiene procedures and ensure frequent handwashing.
  • Workplaces should review cleaning activities and routines. You should consider increasing frequency, especially of hand contact surfaces.

Should you have any further questions, our staff will be available to discuss via this email address – food.advice@fife.gov.uk