The Financial Conduct Authority has recently issued a statement in which it has expressed support for everyone working to ensure the public has access to money throughout the pandemic:
Support for frontline staff
Banks, building societies, credit unions and Post Offices are working hard to continue to provide their services during the current period of national restrictions due to coronavirus (Covid-19). At this time, we encourage customers, wherever possible, to use online services for their banking.
We are aware of reports of an increase in verbal and physical attacks on branch staff by customers who have been told to wear a face covering or asked to wait in a queue to help maintain social distancing. This is a matter of concern for the FCA and we wish to thank the frontline staff for their significant efforts to keep branches open during this challenging period.
We would remind customers that, by law, it is mandatory to wear a face covering in a branch, unless you have an exemption. For more information on this please refer to the government guidance for England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland.
Branch staff are carrying out a critical public-facing service and must be treated with respect. Staff should not be physically or verbally attacked in any situation, including where a customer has been asked to wear a face covering.
We support firms that adopt a zero-tolerance approach to staff abuse and any necessary follow-up actions to enforce this.
We recognise that coronavirus has made many people anxious about their finances. We are working closely with firms to make sure customers can access the financial services and help they need during the pandemic. For more information on the FCA’s temporary measures to support consumers, please see our coronavirus page.