THE RETAIL BULLETIN - The home of retail news
Lest we forget
HOME
RETAIL NEWS
RETAIL EVENTS
Fashion
Department Stores
Shopping Centres & Retail Parks
Home & DIY
Electricals
Health & Beauty
General Merchandise
Entertainment
Sports & Leisure
Retail Solutions
Food & Drink
Interviews
RETAIL INSIGHTS
RETAIL SOLUTIONS
ABOUT US
CONTACT US
SUBSCRIBE FOR FREE
Retail crime surges during recession.

The number of thefts from shops rose by a third in a single year with an incident occurring nearly every minute, 24 hours a day - while incidents of violence and abuse against shop staff doubled.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Retail crime surges during recession.

The number of thefts from shops rose by a third in a single year with an incident occurring nearly every minute, 24 hours a day - while incidents of violence and abuse against shop staff doubled.

The findings are revealed in the British Retail Consortium's (BRC's) Retail Crime Survey 2009.

For the first time the BRC survey has assessed the proportion of retail crimes that are not reported to the police. Data from retailers indicates two thirds of customer thefts are not reported; suggesting the actual number of shoplifting incidents was over one million.

The survey also shows retail crime of all types cost UK shops £1.1 billion in 2008/09 – a 10 per cent increase on the previous year and equivalent to 72,000 retail jobs.

Stealing by customers accounts for the biggest share of all retail crime both by the number of incidents (94 per cent) and by monetary value (42 per cent).

The BRC Crime Survey showed incidents of violence and abuse against shop staff doubled compared with the previous year. Physical violence rose 58 per cent, verbal abuse by 37 per cent. At least 22,000 retail employees suffering threats, physical or verbal attacks. The actual figure is probably much higher as a good deal of abuse goes unreported.

Stephen Robertson, British Retail Consortium Director General, said: "The increase in retail crime during the recession can't be justified as a move from ‘greed' to ‘need'. Whatever the motivation, shoplifting is never victimless or acceptable. The cash costs are met by honest customers who end up paying more and the human costs by shop staff who intervene.

"It's shocking that a shop theft happens almost every minute, 24 hours a day. We need tougher sentencing to deter thieves and more consistent use of fixed penalty notices between police forces. Too many fines for shoplifting remain unpaid. We need more effective enforcement so they aren't devalued as a deterrent.

"The police and criminal justice system must take retail theft more seriously. There's been some progress but, with a fifth of retailers saying they don't report crime because they have no confidence in the police and two thirds of shop thefts going unreported, not enough."

"The doubling in violence and abuse against retail staff is the biggest concern of all. It should never be regarded as ‘part of the job'. Punishments must be strong enough to deter and the police should measure workplace violence when they assess business crime in the community and determine local policing priorities."

Email this article to a friend

You need to be logged in to use this feature.

Please log in here

Subscribe For Retail News

RETAIL EVENTS

The Retail Design Seminar 2018
The Retail Design Seminar 2018
14 November 2018
The Cavendish Conference Centre
The Retail Design Seminar 2018
Omnichannel Futures Conference 2019
Omnichannel Futures Conference 2019
6 February 2019
Cavendish Conference Centre, London WG1 9DT
A truly omnichannel offering requires an understanding of customer behaviour across all shopping channels and how this should impact your overall business strategy
Customer Engagement Conference 2019
Customer Engagement Conference 2019
5 June 2019
Cavendish Conference Centre, London W1
The 10th Annual Retail Customer Engagement Summit
AI in Retail Conference 2019
AI in Retail Conference 2019
18 September 2019
Cavendish Conference Center, 22 Duchess Mews, London W1G 9DT
Retail marketing is changing pace rapidly by making communication across all platforms personalised, relevant, efficient, and helpful. AI not only helps shoppers find a perfect product but also pre-empts the shopping behaviour and speeds up payment.
The HR Summit 2019
The HR Summit 2019
Tuesday 8 October 2019
The Cavendish Conference Centre, London W1
The 11th HR Summit 2019, The Cavendish Conference Centre, London W1, 8 October 2019
Fix The Dinosaur Roundtable 2018
Fix The Dinosaur Roundtable 2018
19 October 2018
The Euston Suite, The Hallam, 44 Hallam St, London W1W 6JJ
A Masterclass in IBMi Legacy Issues