SGF calls for enforcement

Retailers report mask use slipping

man with mask in shop
Dr John Lee warned that retailers have been reporting “face covering fatigue.

THE Scottish Grocers Federation (SGF) has called for increased enforcement on mandatory face coverings in shops.

Dr John Lee, head of public affairs and policy at the SGF warned that “face covering fatigue” is setting in among some customers, and authorities must do more to ensure compliance.

Under the Scottish Government’s Covid-19 regulations, retailers are not responsible for enforcing mandatory face covering rules – although they are put at risk of infection when customers break the rules.

Lee commented: “In the first six weeks or so compliance from customers was very high. However, based on feedback from our members, compliance from customers seems to have fallen back to around 70%.

“It is not the responsibility of retailers to enforce this legislation and staff should not put themselves in a potentially threatening or abusive situation.

“Without effective enforcement, measures such as these will never have the intended impact – the Scottish government has created a voluntary plus situation rather than a fully mandatory one.

“We fully appreciate the pressure Police Scotland colleagues are under but if compliance levels are to move back towards 100% we need this to be given a higher operational priority.”