Victoria ID checks and QR code check in rules.
As another blow to Victorians and especially, Metropolitan Melbourne, the seven-day extension of the Circuit Breaker lockdown has also introduced new rules surrounding QR codes and check-in procedures.  victoria id checks

With the new rules come new risks for our retail workers. Here are all the frequently asked questions by business owners about the Victoria QR code system and new check-in rules to ensure you stay compliant and avoid hefty fines.

 

Why have these new rules been put in place?

Escalated by the recent increase in exposure sites and infections in Victoria, these tough measures have been put in place to help contact tracers quickly access contact information and get in touch with everyone who has visited a public exposure site.

 

Which businesses are now required to register for a QR code check-in system?

All of the following venues and facilities must register for a QR code using the free Victorian Government QR Service, and ensure all customers and visitors to the premise check in appropriately. victoria id checks

As of Friday 4 June, all retail stores must ensure customers are checking in using QR codes, even if customers are there for less than the previous 15-minute threshold.

From 28 May 2021, venues and facilities currently using a Victorian Government Application Programming Interface (API) linked digital record keeping system must use the Victorian Government QR Service. For instructions on how to switch, please go to Register to use the Victorian Government QR Code Service.

Venues and facilities required to use the free Victorian Government QR Code Service for record keeping are:

  • Supermarkets
  • Retail stores
  • Retail shopping centres
  • Markets or market stalls
  • Hospitality (including food and drink facilities, such as cafes, restaurants, pubs, bars, clubs, nightclubs, karaoke and hotels except for takeaway service)
  • Indoor physical recreation and community sport (including staffed and unstaffed gyms, play centres, indoor skateparks and indoor trampolining centres)
  • Outdoor physical recreation and community sport facilities
  • Pools, spas, saunas, steam rooms and springs (indoor and outdoor spaces, including water or non-water parts of the venue)
  • Hairdressing, beauty and personal care services
  • Accommodation (visitors in shared, communal spaces)
  • Ceremonies and religious gatherings (including places of worship)
  • Weddings: Record keeping requirements as per the venue where the wedding is held.
  • Funerals: Record keeping requirements as per the venue where the funeral is held.
  • Community venues and facilities including libraries and toy libraries (not including outdoor skate parks, playgrounds, and other outdoor communal areas)
  • Creative arts facilities
  • Real estate inspections and auctions
  • Seated entertainment venues (indoors and outdoors)
  • Indoor non-seated venues (such as galleries)
  • Outdoor non-seated entertainment venues (such as Zoos, live museums)
  • Arcades, escape rooms, bingo centres
  • Drive-in cinemas
  • Amusement parks
  • Gaming (casinos, gaming machine areas, retail betting venues)
  • Adult entertainment (brothels, sex on premises venues, sexually explicit entertainment)
  • Commercial tourism operators including, but not limited to:
    • Guided tours of museums, galleries, historic locations
    • Adventure sports (ballooning, abseiling, rock climbing, canoeing, kayaking,)
    • Marine based tours (kayaking, scuba, fishing, surfing)
  • Commercial passenger vehicles.

These venues must also provide an alternative record keeping system for people who do not have or cannot use a device to scan the QR code. This could include making a service available for people to use (like an iPad).

Providing a pen and paper for manual recording keeping is okay if electronic record keeping is temporarily unavailable – for example, an internet outage.

For other venues not listed including supermarkets, markets, retail and shopping centres, using the free Victorian Government QR Code Service is highly recommended.

 

Do customers need to check in at retail stores?

Yes, all retail stores are now also required to register for the Victorian Government QR Code Service and ensure all customers are checking in. This includes:

  • Supermarkets
  • Retail stores
  • Retail shopping centres
  • Markets or market stalls.

 

What if customers are only dropping off or picking up from a venue?

As of Friday 4 June, customers entering a premise as listed above will be required to check in even if they are there for under 15 minutes. This means even if customers are just grabbing a takeaway, or an Uber Eats driver picking up a delivery, they will still be required to check in.

This applies to everyone, whether it is an employee, customer or other visitors attending the venue on work duties.

However, the Victorian Government has confirmed that no QR code check in is required for drive through at fast food restaurants. victoria id checks

 

Are there penalties for non-compliance?

Yes. If a business that is required to keep electronic records is found without the QR Code System in place, or is not requiring customers to check in, they will be issued with a $1,652 on the spot fine for non-compliance, and will be issued with an improvement notice at the same time to ensure the non-compliance is rectified.

If there is continued, blatant or wilful non-compliance, a $9,913 fine can be issued.

For continued, blatant or wilful non-compliance a business may be prosecuted in court.

 

Are there alternatives to a QR code check-in system?

In order to allow contact tracers to quickly access your customers’ contact information and get in touch with them if a public exposure site has been identified, it is important to have an electronic record keeping system at required businesses. As of 28 May, Victoria has moved to a uniform record-keeping system by enforcing the use of the Service Victoria app. If the electronic system is temporarily unavailable, an alternative record keeping method must be offered such as pen and paper for customers to check in.

There is a two-week amnesty period for retailers and supermarkets to implement the QR code system, and the government is also working on an alternative check-in system.

 

What about ID checks?

From this morning, regional businesses must take reasonable steps to confirm a customer is from regional Victoria, not Melbourne, before allowing them to sit down in their premises. Regional Victorian business operators face fines of $9,913 for failing to check customers’ identification. The ID checks must occur at any and all Victorian regional pubs, cafes, restaurants or other venue. victoria id checks

If customer refuses to produce ID, business has the right to refuse entry or service and fines go to individual. If people don’t have ID, or their ID does not reflect living address if they have just moved, for example, businesses cannot accept verbal confirmation. The ID must be government issued.
This additional burden has been placed on regional Victorian businesses rather than the “ring of steel” approach which was criticised for being ineffective during the initial lockdown. However, this additional measure only places more stress on business owners. 

You can check the postcodes that are not permitted HERE.

 

What if a customer refuses to check in?

There is a dual responsibility, both on the business and the customer, to check in using the Victorian Government QR Code Service. If a customer chooses not to provide their details, the business has the right to refuse entry or service.

Obviously, this may cause a customer to become belligerent. We remind all of our members that handling these customers is not your responsibility – if the situation escalates, phone security or the police.

If a customers is showing any signs of aggression or abuse, it is important the workers on premise know how to act appropriately and handle the situation before it escalates to dangerous levels.

 

Do you have any questions that weren’t addressed in this article? Let us know. Send your question to [email protected] and we’ll help you stay COVID Safe.