BRC Calls on government for retail worker protection
The British Retail Consortium (BRC) has called on the UK government to act immediately on violence and abuse against shop workers.
Today is the second reading of the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill in the House of Lords.
The BRC wants the government to indicate in the debate that it will honour the commitment it made in the House of Commons to address the issues of rising violence and abuse against shop workers and ensure that they have better protection under the law.
A rise in incidents is despite a record £1.2 billion investment in safety measures such as body worn cameras, more security personnel and panic alarms.
Last month, the new Protection of Workers (Retail and Age-restricted Goods and Services) Act 2021 came into force in Scotland after it was unanimously passed by the Scottish Parliament.
The BRC wants the government to pass legislation that would make assaulting or abusing a retail worker a specific offence, with tougher sentences for offenders.
Helen Dickinson, Chief Executive at the BRC, says: “We need legislation in England and Wales to protect our hard working retail colleagues. It makes no sense nor is it remotely fair that people who work in retail are better protected in Dundee than they are in Doncaster.”
“The current laws simply do not go far enough. Most offenders go unpunished, while victims and their families are left traumatised.”
“We cannot let another year to go by with rising crime statistics and a mounting pile of deplorable stories of violence and abuse in shops. The government needs to act, and deliver on its commitment to protect retail workers.”
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