Half a million debit cards to be issued to bank customers to help them shop online

Vulnerable customers such as the elderly will be issued with a debit card to help them shop online and make tap and go purchases during COVID-19.

Half a million debit cards to be issued to bank customers to help them shop online

More than half a million debit cards are being issued to bank customers around Australia to help them shop online or use contactless transactions during the coronavirus pandemic.

Fast-tracked by financial watchdog ASIC, the rollout of cards will be made to Australian Banking Association and Customer Owned Banking Association members who do not currently have a card.

It's expected many of the recipients are the elderly who have traditionally relied on cash, and opened bank accounts before debit cards were a standard feature.

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The fast-tracking of cards will allow recipients to shop online or over the phone, as well as use tap-and-go payments to access services in the community who have stopped using cash to minimise physical handling.

There is no requirement for the cards to be activated or used, and being a debit system recipients will not incur debt like they would with a credit card.

Ian Yates, Chief Executive of the Council on Ageing (COTA), said the initiative will alleviate some of the concerns shared by Australia's ageing population.

"COTA has received many calls during the COVID-19 period expressing concern that people struggled to purchase essential goods and services because some retailers stopped accepting cash," Mr Yates said.

"COTA Australia thanks COBA and its member banks for stepping up to provide a rapid response for their older customers, and ASIC for flexibly permitting this to happen."

Despite the reluctance on businesses to use cash, there has been relatively little evidence that cash increases the risk of transmission of COVID-19.

Businesses are legally allowed to dictate the payment terms required by customers, as long as requirements such as EFTPOS only are made clear before the transaction has begun.

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Source : 9 News More   

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Bunnings car parks to be used for coronavirus testing

Victorians will be able to get tested for COVID-19 in Bunnings car parks under a major state government initiative to ramp up testing.

Bunnings car parks to be used for coronavirus testing

Victorians will be able to get tested for coronavirus at Bunnings car parks under a state government initiative to ramp up COVID-19 testing.

A pilot is set to be conducted at the Bunnings West Footscray store tomorrow, before mobile testing further expands to a handful of stores in metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria.

Bunnings revealed to 9News the testing would operate completely independently from Bunnings and would take place in car parks, away from stores.

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9News understands the hardware store giant was approached by the state government due to its stores being equipped with large car parks.

Bunnings is still working through which car parks would be most appropriate for traffic management.

"This new initiative is just another way we are supporting the government and the community to help us tackle COVID19 together," Bunnings managing director Mike Schneider said.

"We've been overwhelmed by the positive and supportive feedback we've received from our team on all the changes and initiatives we have implemented."

The COVID-19 initiative follows mobile testing rolling out across major Melbourne shopping centres, including at Chadstone, Highpoint, Doncaster and Northland which commenced today.

The testing schemes fall under the Victorian government's monster plan to get 100,000 people tested for coronavirus across the state in two weeks.

Source : 9 News More   

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