The New Zealand Council of Retail Property (NZCoRP) has created a set of guidelines and operational protocols, including new cleaning and hygiene measures, that all members will need to adhere to under level 2.
The guidelines include facilitating social distancing via extensive operational signage, increased hygiene and sanitation procedures, encouraging contactless transactions, reducing common dining seating areas and providing support to those businesses with specific regulations (such as hairdressers and beauty clinics).
New cleaning and hygiene procedures include the placement of hand sanitiser at or near key locations such as store entrances, building entrances, customer service desks, lifts, meeting rooms and food courts.
Cleaning regimes will be developed individually by each centre but will include, during trade ongoing cleaning and sanitising of public spaces particularly focused on high touchpoint surfaces such as handrails, daily additional (night clean rosters) focused on surface hygiene.
Shift night-time staff to daytime where possible, to increase cleaning focus and reinforce enhanced hygiene expectations.
Retail property and shopping centre owner will be required to display static and digital messaging promoting social distancing and good hygiene practice and provide appropriate PPE such as face masks and gloves for use by centre public facing teams including cleaning and security personnel if required.
Campbell Barbour, chair of NZCoRP said while each centre will have a unique application of these guidelines depending on their layout, the aim is to implement widespread procedures that ensure the highest standard of safety and hygiene are met.
“No one wants to see us move back up the alert levels. It is imperative that a united approach is taken, and that New Zealanders feel comfortable supporting their local retailers as we kickstart the post-covid economy,” said Barbour.
Greg Harford, Retail NZ CEO said the retail sector has been seriously impacted by the enforced closure under the lockdown, and the move to level 2 means the retail sector can now re-open and kick-start a domestic-led recovery.
“Retailers are actively planning for the move to level 2, and with good hygiene practices and social distancing in place, customers can be confident about getting back to the shops.”
From Thursday 14 May, retail, malls, cafes, restaurants, cinemas, and other public spaces including playgrounds and gyms, can reopen. All will be required to have physical distancing and strict hygiene measures in place. On Monday 18 May, schools will be allowed to re-open.
Bars will be allowed to open from Thursday, 21 May under strict requirements – seating must be provided, there must be space between tables, and there mustn’t be multiple waiters and waitresses serving a single table.
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