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Standalone Offence for Assaulting a Shopworker to be Debated

Crime Report 2024 cover

Standalone Offence for Assaulting a Shopworker to be Debated

The Association of Convenience Stores has welcomed amendments to the Criminal Justice Bill that would make assaulting a shopworker a more serious offence.

The Report Stage debate on the Criminal Justice Bill, beginning today, is set to include a series of amendments that would the put the following into law: make assaulting a shopworker while they’re at work a separate offence; introduce new community orders for prolific shoplifters after their third offence; and introduce the option to require offenders to wear an electronic tag to monitor their whereabouts, or to impose curfew requirements on them.

The amendments are part of the Government’s wider commitment to tackle retail crime, which includes improvements to reporting procedures and a £55m investment over the next four years in facial recognition technology to identify repeat offenders.

Figures from the 2024 ACS Crime Report show that retailers have recorded over 600 incidents of theft per hour over the last year, along with around 76,000 incidents of violence in local shops. 

ACS has been consistently calling on both central Government and local Police and Crime Commissioners to make tackling retail crime a priority because of the enormous financial, mental and physical toll that it takes on retailers and their colleagues. 

Association of Convenience Stores chief executive James Lowman said: “Working in and running a convenience store business can be incredibly rewarding and is a great career opportunity for hundreds of thousands of people, but it can also be extremely challenging when a store is being targeted by thieves and abusive criminals.

“The creation of a standalone offence for assaulting a shopworker is an important step forward that demonstrates to the more than 400,000 colleagues in our sector that government is backing them and recognises the essential service that they provide on a daily basis.”

The full ACS Crime Report is available here.

This entry was posted by Chris on Wed, 15/05/2024 - 12:34
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