Spitting or coughing on someone deliberately is vile, disgusting and unacceptable at any time.
In the middle of a pandemic, there must be zero tolerance for such vile behaviour. That’s why we are calling for new penalties for such behaviour to be introduced in Victoria.
Unfortunately, we have been contacted by many members who have been deliberately spat or coughed on by customers.
This is absolutely not on. Managers need to take action and ban anyone who does this from entering the store. Security guards need to be present to intervene.
But it is clear that this problem is more widespread and it needs some action from the Victorian Government and the police.
It is disturbing that we need a law that stops this kind of disgraceful behaviour, but unfortunately we do.
State Secretary Michael Donovan has written to the Premier, the Health Minister and the Chief Health Officer of Victoria asking for them to take action on this issue.
There has to be zero tolerance for this sort of behaviour being directed at the wonderful workers who have been keeping our community going, whether it’s retail workers, health workers, police, public transport workers or any other worker.
Other State Governments have issued directions that provide for specific fines for people who deliberately spit or cough on essential workers. Victoria must do the same.