More

    Date set for parliamentary debate as BRC report shows rise in retail crime

    Photo: iStock

    The parliament will debate the issue of retail crime and the demand for a legislation to protect retail workers on 7 June.

    The development follows a parliamentary petition launched last June by trade union Usdaw, which secured over 100,000 signatures to warrant a debate in the parliament.

    “I am grateful to our reps, activists and members who worked hard to pass the necessary 100,000 signatures, which has now secured a parliamentary debate. This is a hugely important issue for shopworkers, with incidents of abuse doubling during the pandemic. Abuse should never be just a part of the job,” Paddy Lillis, Usdaw general secretary said.

    Meanwhile, the British Retail Consortium (BRC) today (26) published its 2021 Retail Crime Survey, which highlights the continuing menace of violence and abuse faced by retail staff.

    The survey shows there were 455 incidents of violence or abuse each day in 2019-20, up 7 per cent from 2018-19. The findings also show that the total cost to retailers of crime and crime prevention was £2.5 billion, an increase of 14 per cent on the previous year (£2.2 billion).

    According to the survey, the police response to retail crime incidents was rated as ‘good’ or ‘fair’ in just 40 per cent of cases, while only 6 per cent of violent incidents ended in prosecution.

    “These are not mere statistics, those affected are our parents, our partners and our children, all who needlessly suffer, just for doing their job,” Helen Dickinson, chief executive of the BRC, said.

    The BRC has reiterated the call for a separate statutory offence for assaulting, threatening, or abusing a retail worker, the major demand of the parliamentary petition.

    “Many incidents arise as staff carry out their legal duties, including age verification and more recently, implementing Covid safety measures. And, despite retailers spending enormous sums on crime prevention, the situation is only getting worse. Scotland has sent a clear message that the rise in violence and abuse must end, and the rest of the UK must follow their lead,” Dickinson said.

    In January, the Scottish Parliament voted for a new law to protect shop workers. While a similar legislation introduced by Alex Norris MP failed to complete its passage through the House of Commons before the end of the session, retailers and trade bodies are now calling on the government for an amendment in the proposed Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill.

    Labour’s shadow policing minister Sarah Jones has tabled a protection of shop workers amendment to the bill, which is currently at committee stage.

    “We now urge MPs to support the aims of the petition and persuade the government to back legislation to protect shop workers. They have the perfect opportunity by accepting an amendment from Sarah Jones MP to the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill, which we hope will be supported in the bill committee,” Lillis said.

    Latest

    Number of Brits mainly using cash jumps unexpectedly

    There has been a spike in the number of...

    Valeo Foods acquires Canadian maple syrup business Appalaches Nature

    Valeo Foods Group, one of Europe’s leading producers of...

    New Four Loko Pink Melon – for a taste of summer

    Vodka-based RTD brand Four Loko has unveiled its latest...

    Ice-cream prices soar up by more than 30 per cent: Which?

    Price of popular ice-creams and lollies have soared by...

    Don't miss

    Number of Brits mainly using cash jumps unexpectedly

    There has been a spike in the number of...

    Valeo Foods acquires Canadian maple syrup business Appalaches Nature

    Valeo Foods Group, one of Europe’s leading producers of...

    New Four Loko Pink Melon – for a taste of summer

    Vodka-based RTD brand Four Loko has unveiled its latest...

    Ice-cream prices soar up by more than 30 per cent: Which?

    Price of popular ice-creams and lollies have soared by...

    Local stores raise alarm as shop theft figures touch record high levels

    Shoplifting offences have increased to a new 20 year...

    Number of Brits mainly using cash jumps unexpectedly

    There has been a spike in the number of people who mainly use cash for their daily spending, a new report has found. The banking...

    Valeo Foods acquires Canadian maple syrup business Appalaches Nature

    Valeo Foods Group, one of Europe’s leading producers of sweets, treats and snacks, has completed the acquisition of Appalaches Nature, a Canadian maple syrup...

    Ice-cream prices soar up by more than 30 per cent: Which?

    Price of popular ice-creams and lollies have soared by more than 30 per cent over the past two years, states a recent report, highlighting...