COVID-19 guidance for retail sector launches

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The UK retail sector has been affected dramatically by the COVID-19 emergency, with perspex screens, facemasks and socially distanced queueing now commonplace in shops up and down the country.

For those working in the sector, the crisis has brought with it unique challenges. As an essential part of the fabric of UK society, retailers have had to adapt and innovate to serve the needs of the public, all while ensuring the safety of their staff and customers remains a priority.

To help retailers navigate the unprecedented situation they face, Business Companion has launched a comprehensive guide that sets out how they can continue to operate safely during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Working safely during coronavirus (COVID-19): A retail guide has been designed for businesses in need of accurate, reliable and up-to-date information on their responsibilities to staff and customers, and will be updated regularly in line with the latest government guidance as the situation develops.

It includes industry-specific guidance on PPE, cleaning and hygiene, fitting rooms, queue management, and deliveries and returns. It also contains answers to frequently asked questions and a step-by-step guide to completing a COVID-19 risk assessment.

Written in plain English, the guide makes for an indispensable resource for retail managers and workers in businesses of all sizes and varieties, from department stores to greengrocers.

It is accompanied by a series of Annexes tailored to addressing the issues faced by specific types of retailer, such as those which operate outdoors, those which visit customers’ homes, and vehicle traders.

The guidance is available to read on the business companion website, to read in a digital edition booklet or to download in a fully designed or printable format. A dedicated landing page has been set up for the guidance at

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