COVID-19 Guide for Frontline Bank Branch Workers

As front-line bank workers you continue to maintain vital services to communities and vulnerable customers under extraordinarily difficult circumstances. We acknowledge your dedication and are grateful to the work you continue to do.

However, we have listened to your feedback and we know more can be done to protect and support you. Therefore, we have proposed, to the Central Bank and to the CEOs of all retail banks here, the adoption of a Protocol to protect you, your colleagues and your family.

While we campaign for this Protocol to be introduced, please see some guidance below to help and support you.

If you have questions or need assistance in getting this implemented in your location, please freephone our advice centre.

1. Cleaning

Employers should provide staff with the following and ensure these are regularly refreshed.

  • hand washing soap
  • access to warm water
  • cleaning agents
  • gloves
  • closed bins

Employers should ensure that branches are cleaned thoroughly at frequent and regular intervals and more frequently than usual. This cleaning should include touchpoint cleaning to protect staff and customers.

Staff should be authorised to close branches for short periods of time to engage in cleaning of hands.

Staff should take regular breaks to wash hands, even if this means slight disruption for customers.

2. Customer meetings, transactions & notifications

Not all customer appointments should take place. Banks should publish their branch phone numbers and email addresses.

Bank should communicate to customers to minimise branch footfall.

Staff should postpone non-critical meetings.

Staff should minimise customers coming into the branch at this critical time.

3. Social distancing & attending branch

Staff should, where possible, work from behind a glass screen and enforce strict social distancing of two metres for any queues that form in the bank branch. If necessary, tape should be placed on the ground two metres apart where customers must stand and maintain a two-metre gap.

Customer access into branch locations should be staggered and branch managers should actively manage this process.

Customer should be given direct dial numbers for their local branch and use ATMs and other machines, thus avoiding contact with staff in the branch.

Banks should minimise and restrict unnecessary movement and migration of staff between locations. Staff should work from only one location and preferably nearest to their home.

4. Minimising the risk of spread

Employers should immediately introduce and communicate protocols should a member of staff have to self-isolate for minimising the risk to colleagues and to help authorities with identifying potential community spread of the virus.

Where a case is identified in a location it should be immediately closed, staff sent home on full pay and a deep clean conducted.

Every customer visiting the branch should be recorded, in a GDPR compliant way via a sign-in book, to help public authorities track potential spread of cases in the community and to help early identification, isolation and treatment of you, your colleagues and the public if necessary.

Pregnant staff and any staff over 65 should not be working and should be maintained on full pay.

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