Mandurah restaurant owner calls for customer patience as venues reintroduce sign-in sheets

Mumma's Eats 'n' Sweets owner Tracey Dunbar is urging customers to practice patience as venues reintroduce contact registers.
Mumma's Eats 'n' Sweets owner Tracey Dunbar is urging customers to practice patience as venues reintroduce contact registers.

A Mandurah restaurant owner is urging customers to practice patience as venues across the state get set to introduce mandatory sign-in sheets this weekend.

As of Saturday (December 5) all bars, restaurants, churches, gyms, libraries and cinemas will be required to keep a contact register in place, with staff and patrons needing to sign themselves in and out.

The extensive measure is being rolled out by the WA government in a bid to enable rapid contact tracing should a COVID-19 outbreak occur.

But while agreeing with the need for mandatory sign-ins, Mumma's Eats 'n' Sweets owner Tracey Dunbar said she was worried added wait times could cause frustration among some customers.

"I can see the need for a sign-in sheet. Obviously you want to be able to trace people if someone tests positive (for COVID), but I'm worried about customers having a go at our staff," she said.

"Ninety-nine per cent of customers are fantastic and they understand why they're waiting a little longer, but there's always a few that will have a go.

"It makes it really hard for our staff and it makes things awkward for other customers, so we're hoping everyone can bear with us and be patient as we roll this out."

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To ease the burden on businesses the state government has released the new Safe WA mobile app, which allows people to register their attendance at a venue by scanning a QR code.

But Ms Dunbar said many residents would choose not to use the app, and staff would still have to monitor the sign-in sheet.

"It creates a fair bit more work for our staff," she said.

"Last time we had the sign-in sheet a lot of people would use fake names, so we'd have to tell them they could only get take away because they hadn't filled the form in properly.

"Like I said, I understand the need for it, but we just need customers to be as kind as they can be."

Premier Mark McGowan said mandatory contact registers were a necessary measure.

"Whilst it is a tiny inconvenience to people, it is a safety measure," he said.

"This is all about being prepared for the future, it's about having systems in place we can scale up if we need to in future."

Failing to comply to the new requirements could result in fines and penalties of up to $50,000 for an individual and $250,000 for a body corporate or 12 months' imprisonment.