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    Criminal Justice Bill to include wholesale workers under retail worker definition

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    After months of lobbying and consultation, wholesale workers have been included under the definition of retail worker in the amended Criminal Justice Bill.

    This amendment comes after wholesale body Federation of Wholesale Distributors (FWD) gave evidence before the Home Affairs Select Committee on violence against retail workers on April 17, saying that as a critical link in the food and drink supply chain, the wholesale sector is uniquely vulnerable to crime, from depots to distribution.

    “This is a great win for the sector and we are proud to representing wholesale and its workers”, stated FWD on social media.

    Under the amendment, the legislation will also protect those working for a wholesaler in a cash and carry setting.

    FWD stated on Friday (17), “The inclusion of wholesale within the retail worker definition was vital in order to prevent a displacement of crime moving from the high street and into industrial estates as offenders realise these workers fall out of scope of the new stand-alone retail worker offence.

    It was also paramount that offenders were held to account for violence against a wholesale worker under the legislation in order to assure the 43 police forces up and down the country had continuity when responding to cash and carry crime.

    The wording of the amendment also states that retail premises includes a “vehicle”. FWD is seeking clarification that this clause indicates that delivery drivers are also in scope. After officials had said it was highly unlikely delivery drivers would be in scope, the retail industry unanimously lobbied for during an emergency consultation meeting with the Home Office some three weeks ago.

    The amendment regarding retail crime will now progress to debate in the Report Stage on a date to be confirmed, with MPs debating the proposed legislation in the House of Commons. FWD will ask MPs to raise any issues they see with the amendment or clarification.. Crime and Policing Minister Chris Philp has confirmed that this new legislation would receive Royal Assent and be passed prior to a GE.

    Read the amended bill here: https://lnkd.in/eiBsvGFQ

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