• BRC survey shows 115 retail workers are attacked every day, industry renews calls for Government to act quickly
  • BRC, Usdaw and ACS are calling for tougher sentences for attacks on shopworkers
  • Kate Green MP calls for tougher sentences and additional police officers to address this violence

With 115 attacks on shop workers every day, the industry continues to push the Government to take steps to protect retail colleagues, following a consultation that closed over six months ago. During that time, an estimated 21,000 shop workers were attacked in their workplace.

In June 2019, the British Retail Consortium (BRC) submitted evidence, supported by Usdaw and the Association of Convenience Stores (ACS), which showed the scale of retail violence in the UK. Common triggers include enforcing legally required age restriction checks, refusing to serve intoxicated customers, or challenging thieves.

Violence has grown despite record spending of nearly a £1 billion per year by retailers on crime prevention. A new approach is required as there is a significant imbalance between risk and reward for these criminals. The industry is still waiting on a response from the Policing Minister, Kit Malthouse MP.

In response, Kate Green MP is working closely with the BRC on this critical issue and is pushing for more effective sentences for violent offenders convicted of attacking retail workers and more police officer resources to be dedicated to halting the rise in retail violence. Kate Green has now tabled written Parliamentary Questions including asking the Justice Secretary what plans the Government has to strengthen sentences for violent offenders who attack retail workers.

Helen Dickinson OBE, Chief Executive of the British Retail Consortium:
“Violence against shop workers is a critical issue and any delays to tackling it will serve only to create more victims. No one should ever go to work in fear for simply carrying out their job. Retail workers are at the core of our communities across the country and these horrific crimes impact these skilled, passionate and determined individuals that make the industry what it is.”

Kate Green OBE MP, Labour party:
“What retail workers have to face every day is completely unacceptable. Parliament must investigate this critical issue as a matter of urgency. I implore the government to take steps quickly, starting with responding to the call for evidence and I will continue to push for an increase of patrolling police officers to help deter these violent criminals”.