Greater Manchester Police and Crime Commissioner Tony Lloyd is supporting calls for a change in the law that would see stiffer sentences given to people found guilty of assaulting shopworkers.
Speaking during ‘Respect for Shopworkers Week’ 10-14 November, Tony said:
“From bar staff to bus drivers, we all have a right to work without fear, violence or the threat of violence. Abuse should never be treated as ‘part of the job’, and I urge anyone who has been a victim of such assaults to report it to the police.
“It is absolutely unacceptable for people to be subjected to physical and verbal assaults for just doing their job and trying to earn a living. It is especially abhorrent in those cases where the victim has been trying to help or serve the person who has behaved violently towards them.” Tony Lloyd
John Hannett – Usdaw General Secretary says: “We are grateful to Tony Lloyd for supporting our campaign to keep our members safe at work.
“Often, in the course of their duties, shopworkers are expected to enforce the law, whether that is preventing under-age purchases of products like knives, tobacco or alcohol, or detaining shoplifters until the police arrive, they can be put in real danger. Parliament has given shopworkers the duty to enforce the law, so Parliament should provide the necessary protection.
“I have been shocked by the leniency of some of the sentences for assault of workers. Over 300 shopworkers are assaulted every day and it is time to say enough is enough. The Government must act to address this issue and act quickly.”
The ‘Freedom from Fear’ campaign wants the law changed and stiffer penalties issued to prevent violence, threats and abuse against shopworkers.
Campaign organisers say that every day more than 300 shopworkers are assaulted simply for doing their jobs, but too many people still aren’t reporting incidents.
For more information about the campaign, visit: www.usdaw.org.uk/ourcampaigns/freedomfromfear.aspx