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More than half of Britons say UK businesses could do more to keep them safe from Covid-19, survey reveals

* COVID-safe.jpgMore than half (53%) of Britons believe UK businesses could be doing more to improve the hygiene of their premises and keep people safe from Covid-19, according to a new survey.

Commissioned by hygiene and pest control technology company Pelsis Group , the survey of 2,007 people across the UK is believed to be the first to quantify how the pandemic has shifted the nation's attitude towards hygiene.

The survey found that 88% of people want to see UK businesses and organisations implementing stringent hygiene regimes on their premises, with 87% saying the hygiene of places they visit is now more important to them than before the pandemic.

The survey also revealed that more than half of the UK (55%) does not believe that hospitality venues will be safe and hygienic when they reopen and that 58% of people do not believe schools are Covid-safe environments.

When it comes to public transport, the situation is of even greater concern to the UK public, with 76% of people not believing it is a safe and hygienic way to travel. More than a quarter of over 55s (28%) said they were unwilling to use public transport at all, due to concerns over Covid-19, with a further 23% admitting they would only use it as a last resort.

"These findings are sure to set alarm bells ringing in businesses and organisations across the UK as they prepare for the easing of lockdown measures," says Pelsis Group chief executive, Andrew Milner.

"The message from the public is clear; they believe businesses and organisations can do more to keep them safe from Covid-19 and want to see serious action taken to improve the hygiene and safety of premises they operate.

"While the UK vaccination programme is being rolled out, concerns about hygiene and safety aren't simply going to go away. It's by no means certain that the public will simply revert to behaving as they did before the pandemic, once society begins to open up again.

"Businesses and organisations must build trust with the public and give them confidence to return to their premises. If they fail to do so, then the economic ramifications could be profound. Sectors that have been really badly hit by the pandemic, such as hospitality and transport, will find it incredibly difficult to recover if they can't convince people they are running hygiene-secure settings that are safe to be in."

Despite concerns over the hygiene and safety of premises, almost three quarters of people (74%) said being able to check the hygiene protocols of premises online and actively see cleaning procedures taking place would make them more likely to visit them.

The survey also found that in certain parts of the country, significant numbers of people are avoiding going to GP practices, dental practices and hospitals. A fifth of people in Liverpool and Plymouth said they were avoiding these healthcare settings due to fears about hygiene and safety in these settings.

Meanwhile, a greater focus on the importance of hygiene is set to outlast the pandemic, with only 7% people saying the hygiene of the premises they visit will become less important to them once the pandemic comes to an end.

Founded in 1984, Pelsis Group is headquartered in Knaresborough, North Yorkshire. The company has a turnover of around £150m and employs more than 500 people across 15 sites located throughout the UK, Europe, China and the US.


11th March 2021

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