Advice for shops and businesses reopening
The Government has announced that from 15 June, non-essential retail businesses can start to reopen.
Every business will have different challenges depending on the type of retail they are involved in, their location and range of customers.
Sandwell Council is putting together a package of guidance and support to help local businesses and shoppers stay safe.
As a business you can play a leading role in preventing the spread of coronavirus (Covid-19), keeping you, your customers and your staff safe. Maintaining the social distancing rules, use of hand sanitisers and increasing cleansing are all vital in achieving this.
It is compulsory to wear a face covering or face mask in all shops and supermarkets from Friday 24 July, as well as on buses, trains and the Metro.
Face coverings must also be worn in banks, building societies and post offices. It will be compulsory to wear a face covering when buying food and drink to take away from cafes and shops. If you are in a premises where you are able to sit down and consume food or drink that you have bought, then you can remove your face covering in order to eat and drink on-site.
Think Sandwell website advice for businesses
Go to our Think Sandwell website for a range of detailed advice on returning to work safely and making your workplace safer.
There is also advice on working safely on the Government's website and Business Companion website.
Shops and businesses reopening can also join in the Government's #OpenForBusiness social media campaign.
Top tips for reopening your business
Important posters to display
Have you displayed your Staying Covid-19 Secure in 2020 poster to show customers you have carried out the Government's guidance on managing the risk of Covid-19?
Download the Five Steps To Working Safer Together poster here.
There is also a We Are Open poster which has advice for customers on following social distancing guidance and allows you to display the number of customers allowed in your premises at any one time.
Download the We Are Open poster
Our Please Shop Safely poster has key advice for shoppers which you can also display at your premises.
Download the Please Shop Safely poster
Key advice for shoppers
Our shops and businesses look forward to welcoming you back. To help keep everyone safe, please follow these four key pieces of advice:
- If you feel unwell, you must stay at home
- Keep a safe distance – 2 metres where possible and at least 1 metre otherwise – from other people
- Wear a face covering – this is compulsory from 24 July
- Use hand gel if you can and wash your hands as soon as you get home
People are also encouraged to avoid shopping in groups, walk or cycle to the shops if they can, and to pay by contactless rather than cash whenever possible.
Key advice for businesses
1. Continue to work from home, if you can
2. Carry out a Covid-19 risk assessment, in consultation with workers or trade unions.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) website has guidance on working safely during Covid-19 and how to undertake a risk assessment.
3. Check the maintenance of your premises, including the safety of your water supply and prevention of Legionella
Guidance is available on the Think Sandwell website for managing Legionella.
4. Maintain 2 metres social distancing, wherever possible
Think about how you will need to re-design workspaces to maintain at least 1 metre (2 metre wherever possible) distances between people; for example: staggering start times, creating one-way walk-throughs, opening more entrances and exits, changing seating layouts in break rooms, appointment times, signage. Each business needs to consider what will work for them.
5. Where people cannot be 2 metres apart, manage transmission risk
Some aspects of the business may need to be changed or stopped if transmission risks can’t be controlled. Consider putting barriers in shared spaces, creating workplace shift patterns or fixed teams minimising the number of people in contact with one another, or ensuring colleagues are facing away from each other, depending on the nature of the business. Face coverings and face masks will be compulsory in shops and supermarkets from 24 July.
6. Reinforce cleaning processes
Workplaces should be cleaned more frequently, paying close attention to high-contact objects like door handles and keyboards. Employers should provide handwashing facilities or hand sanitisers at entry and exit points. Employees should wash their hands more frequently for at least 20 seconds.
7. Limit cash handling and encourage contactless payment when possible
8. Talk with your workers about preventing the spread of coronavirus
The HSE website has guidance on this talking to workers about preventing the spread of coronavirus.
If anyone has any concerns regarding a business not complying with requirements, please email EHTS_enquiries@sandwell.gov.uk
Other useful resources
Health and Safety Executive (HSE)
You can contact HSE by phone on 0300 790 6787 (Monday to Friday, 8:30am to 8pm) to get advice on protecting people from coronavirus in your workplace. Alternatively you can use their Working Safely Enquiry form online.
Business representative organisations and trade associations
The Government are providing links to business representative organisations and trade associations guidance - go to the Government website for more information.
Markets fully reopening
Our markets are fully reopening from the week beginning 22 June.
The indoor market in Kings Square, West Bromwich, reopened on Monday 22 June, opening hours are Monday – Saturday, 10am-4pm.
Other Sandwell Council markets have reopened as follows.
- West Bromwich High Street Market: Monday 22 June, Monday – Saturday
- Oldbury Market: Monday 22 June, Monday – Saturday
- Great Bridge Market: Wednesday 24 June, Wednesdays and Saturdays
- Wednesbury Market: Tuesday 30 June, Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays
Social distancing will be required on all sites. To keep everyone safe, please follow social distancing markers and the advice of our markets staff and wear a face covering.
If people have any questions they should contact the Markets Office on 0121 553 3074 or email email@example.com
Pages in "Advice for shops and businesses reopening"
- You are here Advice for shops and businesses reopening
- Top tips for reopening your businesses