Kmart CEO's email to shoppers about vaccinations sparks debate

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Kmart boss John Gualtieri has confirmed unvaccinated customers will not be permitted to shop at NSW stores in an email to shoppers that has sparked some debate.

The CEO confirmed the restrictions were in line with the current government regulations, to ensure a "safe, seamless and convenient" shopping experience.

kmart store front
Kmart stores in NSW reopened for the fully vaccinated on Oct 11. Photo: Getty

"As per the NSW Government requirement, customers will need to show proof that they are fully COVID-19 vaccinated, unless a medical exemption applies," the email read.

On Monday, October 11, excited Kmart customers were seen flocking to some stores at midnight to celebrate the end of NSW’s 106-day lockdown.

In line with the current NSW roadmap, retailers are now allowed to welcome back fully vaccinated customers on a limit of 1 person per 4m2.

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The state government has also stated that restrictions will be lifted for unvaccinated residents from December 1, 2021.

A Kmart spokesperson confirmed the store would continue to follow government guidelines.

"We will continue to comply with evolving government requirements to keep our customers and team safe and we will keep customers updated should requirements change," the spokesperson told 7News.

kmart shoppers end of lockdown
Excited shoppers flocked to stores when they reopened at Midnight. Photo: TikTok

The email however, sparked some debate among Kmart shoppers, and confusion, as some seemingly thought the store was 'permanently' banning unvaccinated shoppers.

"Are they not letting unvaccinated people shop in store??" one person asked on Kmart's Facebook page.

Others threatened to boycott the store over the rule.

"Wow never thought Kmart would discriminate so ashamed of them, thought they were a great store, l need to think again," was another angry comment.

"Kmart I have been a massive supporter of your store. but that has now ended. Never again will I purchase anything from your stores. Discrimination Disgusting," another wrote.

Many however, supported the move, with one person commenting: "Well, people should be vaccinated".

"Good on them, I am double vaccinated so don’t have an issue," wrote another.

The state last week hit the mark of 70 per cent of its eligible population fully vaccinated, triggering the new rules, allowing retail and hospitality venues to open.

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