Call for tougher ac­tion on shop staff at­tacks

Midweek Visiter - - Front Page -

SEFTON Cen­tral MP Bill Ester­son demon­strated his sup­port for shop­work­ers when he vis­ited the Co-op store on Deyes Lane in Maghull.

Dur­ing his visit to mark Re­spect for Shop­work­ers Week, Mr Ester­son dis­cussed lo­cal com­mu­nity safety is­sues with staff and heard about the Co-op’s op­er­a­tional pro­gramme to help tackle crime.

The Co-op is back­ing the shop­work­ers’ union Us­daw’s cam­paign and the Re­spect for Shop­work­ers Week.

Mr Ester­son said: “Shop work­ers face an un­prece­dented level of threat from vi­o­lent in­ci­dents as each day across the UK six are threat­ened with a knife and two with a gun.

“Re­cent fig­ures show that across the coun­try vi­o­lent, weaponised crime is on the rise with a 16% in­crease in in­ci­dents in­volv­ing knives.

“That is why I am back­ing this im­por­tant ini­tia­tive as we must all do ev­ery­thing we can to help re­duce th­ese at­tacks.

“It is fan­tas­tic to see the Co-op work­ing so closely with the shop­work­ers’ union Us­daw in or­der to en­sure their staff’s work­ing en­vi­ron­ment is safe.”

Paul Ger­rard, di­rec­tor of cam­paigns at the Co-op, said: “Re­tail crime is of­ten con­sid­ered to be vic­tim­less as peo­ple think it only in­volves a face­less busi­ness los­ing stock or money.

“How­ever, it is not the shop that is left bruised, bleed­ing or trau­ma­tised.

“This type of crime has noth­ing to do with profit and ev­ery­thing to do with peo­ple.’’

The union Us­daw has run 1,000 events across the UK to raise aware­ness of the vi­o­lence, threats and abuse that re­tail staff face all too of­ten.

A sur­vey has re­vealed a 40 per cent rise in in­ci­dents of vi­o­lence against shop­work­ers since 2016.

Co-op staff with Bill Ester­son MP, third right

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