More

    Exclusive: Northern Ireland retailer furious over being excluded from new shopworker assault law

    Retailer Eugene Diamond from Northern Ireland

    As prime minister Rishi Sunak announced his crackdown on retail crime plan today (10), some retailers in Northern Ireland are furious that the new law on shop worker assault include only England and Wales.

    Sunak today (10) announced plans for tougher punishments for serial or abusive shoplifters in England and Wales, including being forced to wear a tag to ensure they do not revisit the scene of their crime, under a new standalone criminal offence of assaulting a retail worker.

    The new law, under which perpetrators could be sent to prison for up to six months and receive unlimited fines, will be introduced via an amendment to the Criminal Justice Bill that is working its way through parliament. The change could happen as early as this summer.

    The plan however does not include Northern Ireland (already available in Scotland), something which has irked retailer Eugene Diamond, owner of Diamonds store on Broughshane Street in Ballymena.

    Calling the exclusion of Northern Ireland “totally ridiculous”, Diamond told Asian Trader, “We should have this law introduced immediately. I have personally been the victim of crime on many occasions and I always say a lot of it comes from the lenient laws.”

    Diamond has been running the Diamonds store for the last 44 years.

    In February last year, the retailer was roughed by a robber who entered this decades-old store demanded cash. He refused and pressed the store’s panic alarm, so the person fled. Due to the upheaval, the store was closed for four hours that morning while Diamond was left completely shaken.

    Exclusive: Northern Ireland retailer furious over being excluded from new shopworker assault law

    The person was arrested the next day but it all resulted in nothing as he was let go by the court with the charge withdrawn with a caution.

    Diamond told Asian Trader at the time, “The same man arrested was in court in December last year too. I felt that it was badly handled. I think we need to see that people like this go to jail or face some kind of repercussion. But if the court is lenient like this, people end up becoming repeat offenders and we have to pay the price.”

    Diamond’s demands are resonated by a leading trade body as well which is calling for the new changes to be extended to Northern Ireland as well, saying “our shop staff deserve no less”.

    Retail NI Chief Executives Glyn Roberts said, “This is a welcome announcement by the Prime Minister given the huge increase in the physical and verbal abuse of shop workers in England and Wales”.

    “Northern Ireland is now the only part of the UK not to have such laws to deter criminals and to protect shop staff.

    ‘In two weeks’, time Retail NI will be launching a comprehensive report on the experiences of our members relating to business crime.  It will outline what the Department of Justice and PSNI need to do to tackle it.

    “Top of our list is for this law to include Northern Ireland. Our shop staff deserve no less.”

    Read further here.

    Latest

    Schulstad Bakery Solutions launches new Danish pastry range

    Lantmännen Unibake’s Schulstad Bakery Solutions brand has launched its...

    Capri-Sun brings free sports sessions to families

    To celebrate 2024’s ‘Summer of Sport’,from May to August...

    General Mills makes additional £50,000 donation to Fareshare

    General Mills has announced an additional £50,000 donation to...

    Amazon union recognition looms as historic vote begins

    Workers at the company’s Coventry fulfilment centre begin ballot...

    Don't miss

    Schulstad Bakery Solutions launches new Danish pastry range

    Lantmännen Unibake’s Schulstad Bakery Solutions brand has launched its...

    Capri-Sun brings free sports sessions to families

    To celebrate 2024’s ‘Summer of Sport’,from May to August...

    General Mills makes additional £50,000 donation to Fareshare

    General Mills has announced an additional £50,000 donation to...

    Amazon union recognition looms as historic vote begins

    Workers at the company’s Coventry fulfilment centre begin ballot...

    Cheerios unveils new campaign offering a trip to Paris Paralympic Games        

    Nestlé Cereals has announced the launch of its new...

    Capri-Sun brings free sports sessions to families

    To celebrate 2024’s ‘Summer of Sport’,from May to August 2024, shoppers purchasing selected packs of Capri-Sun will be able to claim a free sports session in...

    General Mills makes additional £50,000 donation to Fareshare

    General Mills has announced an additional £50,000 donation to FareShare to further support food security across the East of England and employability training initiatives...

    Amazon union recognition looms as historic vote begins

    Workers at the company’s Coventry fulfilment centre begin ballot process for legally binding union rights vote The GMB union announced today that the ballot period...