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Single parents: can you go food shopping with your children?

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With government guidelines on social distancing and with only groups of two permitted in public to stop the spread of coronavirus, questions have been raised about what this mean for single parents.

In a bid to stop the spread of Covid-19, the government has enforced a national lockdown only permitting people to leave their home for essentials such as food and medicine.

Gatherings of more than two people are banned and guidance also suggests shopping should be carried out by one person per household.

This has caused come confusion for single parents, many of whom have no help with childcare. There have even been reports of lone parents shopping with their children being turned away from supermarkets. contacted food retailers to find out about their policies.

You may also want to visit Supermarket restrictions: what you need to know, for more information relating to opening hours, special hours for vulnerable and NHS staff, as well as item restrictions.

Aldi: There are no restrictions at Aldi to people shopping with other members of their family but customers are advised that, if possible, only one person per household should shop alone to keep numbers in store as low as possible.

Asda: Where necessary, Asda is limiting the total number of shoppers allowed into a store at any one time. It requests that customers bring fewer family members when visiting stores.

It said rumours that families with children are being turned away from stores are untrue. It maintains that shoppers should adhere to social distancing guidelines.

Co-op: It does not exclude children and says store employees ensure ‘common sense prevails’, so where a parent has a baby/young child with them, they will be allowed into the shop together. However, people are being encouraged to shop on their own but where this isn’t possible, Co-op will serve those families.

Iceland: It confirms it’s not placing any restrictions on parents bringing their children to stores at the moment, in any of its stores.

Lidl: Lidl has crowd control measures in place but there are no restrictions preventing parents from shopping with their children.

M&S: It is following government guidance and encouraging social distancing in stores. Parents can shop with their children when necessary.

Morrisons: It confirms there are no restrictions on families.

Sainsbury’s: Children are permitted in stores and it isn’t restricting the number of adults per household allowed in store. However, it is asking customers to only send one adult per household where possible to help it serve more households in less time.

Tesco: It has not banned children from stores but is encouraging customers, where possible, to shop with no more than one other person, to help reduce the number of people in-store at any one time.

If customers need to bring children with them, or shop with a carer, they can do.

Waitrose: In line with the government’s guidance on social distancing, Waitrose is asking customers to help it manage the number of people in shops by sending only one member of the household to do their shopping if they possibly can. However, it recognises this is not possible for everyone.

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