Victoria COVID-19 business restrictions, stage 4 lockdown imposed, Bonnyrigg High School, Greenway Park Public School close, Australia death toll at 221
Mr Scott told Radio National he was hopeful that some stores might be able to reopen in coming weeks.
“There are certain products, particularly those you need to use around the house to school your kids from home and to entertain young kids that are going to be in very strong demand,” Mr Scott said.
“I think there are ways in which we’ve proven that we can operate safely.”
Asked if Mr Scott was arguing that Bunnings could keep its stores open safely, Mr Scott said: “Yes, we’ve proven through COVID that we have dramatically adjusted our operating procedures.”
He said in many cases it was safer for staff to be at work than in many home environments.
“I think we have shown that we can adapt our business model.”
Mr Scott said while he welcomed the government continuing to allow online and click and collect purchases the reality was that didn’t work for all households.
“So I think that there’s an opportunity in a very risk-based measured way that we review this over coming weeks.”
Mr Scott said 25,000 staff worked in stores throughout Victoria.
He noted the shutdown would only affect stores in metropolitan Melbourne and Wesfarmers would work out over the next few days how many staff would be needed for the click and collect and online services.
“But look, I am concerned that there will be quite a number that unfortunately we would need to stand down under these rules.”