PEOPLE are urging others not to see their trips to York supermarkets as 'a social family outing' following concerns that shoppers are flouting Covid measures.

Press readers have been reacting to the report that Usdaw has been 'inundated' with complaints from its members expressing 'deep concern' for their safety as shoppers ignore in-store Covid restrictions.

As the shopworkers’ union called on supermarkets and food retailers to revert to stricter rules, York residents took to The Press website and Facebook page to voice their concerns about shopping in the city's stores.

Some said whole families were treating their food shopping trip like a social outing, while others called for one-way systems to be brought back in, where they have been removed.

Others insisted it should be mandatory for store staff to wear masks or, if this was not possible for health reasons, visors.

One reader wrote: "Not stepping foot in a shop end of. Online all the way the new Covid strain isn't worth it as I'm still trying to recover from Covid. Just doing simple tasks leaves me breathless, coughing and needing to rest."

Sainsbury's, which has York stores at Foss Bank and Monk's Cross and numerous Local stores, said it had 'significantly reduced' customer numbers allowed into stores at any one time.

Morrisons, which has stores in York and Malton, is tightening its rules and says people will be offered a face covering if they don't have one. Those who decline to wear one won't be allowed to shop at Morrisons unless they are medically exempt.

A Tesco spokesman said the safety of customers and colleagues was its top priority and extensive social distancing measures were in place in stores to ensure everyone can shop safely.

"We are asking all our customers to wear a face covering when visiting our stores and have prominent signs in place to inform customers of the rules.

"However, there may be some customers who are unable to wear a face covering for medical or safety reasons and we have asked our colleagues to respect that and to not challenge them directly."

One Press reader wrote: "On Saturday whilst shopping alone in Asda I found that some people thought it was alright to take all their family as if it was a social family outing!

"Why couldn't either the kids stay at home with one parent or, if driving was an issue, why couldn't kids stay in the car with a parent? Whilst in the same store, I encountered another couple leisurely browsing, neither had a basket nor trolley and one of them coughing and spluttering behind the mask, was that another essential trip which needed both to attend?

"Why aren't all other supermarkets following Sainsbury's and Morrison's example of mandatory mask wearing? Tesco and Asda, I'm looking at you! If you can't wear a mask for whatever reason then wear a visor. If you can't wear that then I beg the question, what are you doing in the store in the first place?"

Another reader said: "Think one way system should be brought back in especially during lockdown. Sadly some people use them as a social occasion. I would do home delivery but some people need them a lot more than we do."

Another person wrote: "Tesco took all arrows up after first lockdown, have traffic lights on doors then a free for all inside, it's horrible."

Meanwhile, a shop worker said: "I work for the Co-op, and we still follow the one way system. We have a sign outside which we turn round when we get too many customers in the shop, so it becomes one out one in. We sometimes have to remind customers to social distance, mainly at the tills, and we try to keep on top of cleaning."

Another person wrote: "They need to issue people with health issues preventing them wearing a mask with a proper exemption card. That would stop the conspiracy theorists just waltzing into a shop without masks on. I work in a corner shop and am getting seriously worried for my health. Since lockdown, twice as many people are in our store."

Here are just some of the other reader comments among the thread:

"I don’t go out shopping, that’s how concerned I am. Not since this new variant started spreading. Online all the way now for my own safety and that of my family."

"I get weekly deliveries, you just have to keep checking and book at least a week in advance"

"I think supermarkets should do a one way system. Shopping is not a pleasant experience. I'm trying to go shopping once a week."

"I found the first lockdown not many could even stick to it. I also feel now we’re all wearing masks in supermarkets it’s some kind of excuse to lean across people to grab things from shelves."

"It's like nothing has changed. People come into our work and say sorry they've forgotten their masks, we can't tell them not to come in. We have 3 allowed in, I stick to it but others don't. Kids are worse for coming in, they may have masks on but they touch everything and take ages to decide, can't parents buy sweets while shopping and make them last."

"Think you should only go once a week. Not a day out every day for something to do in lockdown. Sadly I know plenty who use this as a way to go out each day and not 1 supermarket but several."

"I wish ppl would shop ALONE if they can and for essentials ONLY some ppl think its a day out for the whole family."

"I always use the cleaner on my basket or trolley and use the hand sanitiser, I’m amazed at how many people just walk straight in and past the sanitiser stations!"

"But there’s no staff anymore asking people to do it or asking people to keep their distance. I guess they have staff off so just can’t man it, plus we’re all adults do we need to be told what to do?"

"Get in get out! Its not rocket science!"

"Aldi 9.30 on a night ..hardly no one in's a bind but less stressful."