Coffee Shop

22 Jul 2020,  George Bullivant

Masks or No masks for garden centre staff?

From 24th July shoppers must wear masks in garden centres.  The staff don't have to.  What mask policy will garden centres follow for staff?  Will they police customers?

13 Aug 2020,  Paolo Arrigo
if it is law, then masks should be worn. You might not like driving at 20mph outside schools and might want to drive at 70, but that is British law. johnson has handled CV19 terribly, but I obey the law of the land, and my staff do and they wear masks. I just came back from Italy which was the epicentre of CV19 in Europe but now is one of the safest places, 10 times safer than the UK now statistically. The whole country is united and determined to beat the virus. There are no exceptions, there is no cummings, everyone wears a mask, everyone uses the compulsory hand gel and follows the rules. Lombardia lost 15,000 people to the virus, but Bergamo where Franchi are based (5,000 deaths) haven;t had a single new case or death in 3 weeks as a result. If it is the law, then people should follow the law. Otherwise they are breaking British law. Not sure why this is controversial and yes they are hot and sweaty and I agree that short frequent breaks, water breaks etc are necessary.
27 Jul 2020,  Phil
It is right and proper that GC Staff are protected from the high numbers of people they must meet each day at work. It is also true that (other than the clear full-face visors) wearing a face mask makes one quite hot, very quickly; and so having to wear one for several hours would be really uncomfortable. (This applies to all retail staff not just those in GC's) Looking through the customer's eyes, if they are making the effort to protect retail staff, who is making an effort to protect them? It only takes one staff member to be asymptomatic to infect many customers; so a numbers-argument doesn't make sense. The end result of some ill thought through guidelines is that only the smallest portion of the people in any store are being protected. This will not give consumers confidence to go into store, in fact quite the opposite. It's a difficult situation forced upon retailers by reactive Government interested in boosting the economy (so perhaps with the right intent), creating a law that has no logic in the sense that consumers must protect retail staff, who in turn do not have to protect consumers. From a perception viewpoint (we're all in this together) it can only be right that retail staff are asked to wear masks, but are allowed lots of short breaks to remove them for a few minutes to alleviate the heat issue, or they are issued the visors which (apparently) are less uncomfortable and cooler. On the specific issue mentioned in your article: if there is one place in which staff should wear a mask (and gloves) for clear & obvious reasons (ask the hospitality industry), it is in restaurant/cafe areas. It is difficult, and in my humble opinion, this is not a time for organisations to abstain from contribution that's a cop-out at a time when their opinion could be hugely supportive.
24 Jul 2020,  James Clark, HTA Director Policy & Communications
We’re pleased that our asks on staff not having to wear masks and not having to enforce customers wearing them has been accepted. We understand from the guidance that outdoor plant areas are exempt. We know our members are taking their own approaches to be within the spirit of the guidance, with a range of different ways to enforce the need for social distancing, handwashing and facemask wearing. Posters are available for members from our website
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