Crimes of violence and abuse against retail staff were already at a record high in the last crime survey at over 400 a day. With the need to encourage customers to wear face coverings and observe social distancing they have escalated even further during the pandemic.

Even before the pandemic, the Government issued a call for evidence to assess the situation further. It rejected the call made in many responses for a separate offence of abuse and violence towards retail staff (now law in Scotland) and instead set up four task and finish groups to look at specific issues. Retailers, police and others have now produced some conclusions.

In this webinar, the Policing Minister (Kit Malthouse) will engage with retailers and others who led the four groups to assess the outcome and recommendations. It will also provide an opportunity to view an animation produced by Suzy Lamplugh Trust for the BRC on practical steps on how to de-escalate a violent situation.

The Groups covered:

  • Reporting – how to ensure all these crimes are reported and recorded
  • Overcoming barriers to data sharing – how to ensure that data protection rules are observed when exchanging information while overcoming the perception they are always a barrier
  • Supporting victims – practical ideas for ensuring that all victims receive the necessary support from businesses and other services
  • Communication – ensuring the public realise how unacceptable such abuse is with a national ‘shopkindly’ campaign.

The webinar should be of interest to retailers, retail staff, police, Police and crime commissioners as they look to the upcoming elections, officials and other policy makers interested in reducing retail crime.

See the Minister of State for Crime and Policing, Kit Malthouse's letter to the National Retail Crime Steering Group



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