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The SDA has been engaging Coles, the Federal Attorney General’s Office and the Department of Health on important health and safety issues for Coles members.

The SDA is pleased that our work has seen Coles now introduce additional measures.

These build on improved procedures the SDA reported to members last week including:

  • customers being required to pack their own bags,
  • employees being allowed to wear gloves and face masks and
  • the encouragement of contactless payment.

New measures at Coles now include:

Security Guards: A security guard will now be present for all trading hours

  • Hand washing: The advice given to Coles and the SDA by the Deputy Chief Medical Officer is that hand washing is the most important precaution people can take to avoid COVID-19.
  • All team members are to now wash their hands at least once per hour with soap and water. This also applies to register operators.
  • You should also continue to use hand sanitiser frequently throughout a shift.


  • After every transaction, clean each ACO screen and pin pad using Sanitiser and a chux cloth.
  • Clean the pin pad at Main Lane checkouts using Sanitiser and a chux cloth after any transaction which a pin has been entered
  • You should spray Sanitiser onto the cloth not directly onto the pin pad or screen.

Abuse or violence from customers

It is never acceptable for you to be abused by a customer at work. You should not put your safety at risk to deal with an incident. If the situation escalates and you feel unsafe, remove yourself and seek assistance from your manager. All aggressive, violent or threatening incidents need to be reported to the Critical Incident Desk (1800 507 877).

If a physical assault or direct threat has been made, the police should be called to assist with the situation.

Remember, the Coles Employee Assistance Program is available to you.

All team members can use the free EAP service on 1300 687 327 for support.

While there is still more work to do, this is positive progress to protect you at work.

The SDA continues to press Coles to ensure your health and safety is a priority, including those outlined in our 10 point safety plan here.

The SDA will continue to keep you updated throughout this period.

You can also read more important information about coronavirus for supermarket workers