An overworked and exhausted Bunnings worker broke down in tears on air while describing the abuse and entitlement caused by customers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The employee, only identified as Luke, spoke with GOLD104.3’s Breakfast Show host Christian O’Connell and begged for customers to be respectful.

“I work at Bunnings and the amount of disrespectful, impatient people coming through is disgusting. We are run off our feet, we are trying our best – understand that everyone, and for those that are giving us respect and are being patient we can’t thank you enough,” he said before being overcome with emotion.

“It’s a struggle … we are trying, we are definitely trying 100 per cent … trying not to have a breakdown is impossible. Woolworths, Coles any retail worker, we are doing our best.”

O’Connell asked how Luke and his team are getting through the challenging period.

“We just lean on each other at work, we just get together and support each other,” Luke replied.

“I don’t know how people can go home and feel good about themselves making others feel like rubbish and sending them home in tears or making me feel as little as anything.

“I understand people are losing their jobs but there’s no excuse to come in and be rude or think you’re the one that should be served first. There are lines, there is self-distancing put in place, and you’ve got people that won’t respect that. And if you’re not going to respect it, then we won’t serve you.”

Luke said he hoped his call would prompt people to “think about their actions before they lash at someone”.

O’Connell then thanked him and other “frontline” workers for their “bravery and courage”.

This article originally appeared on Over60.