Co-op, the convenience retailer, has reported a staggering increase in crime incidents in 2023, reaching record levels. More than one-third of a million incidents were recorded, marking a 44% year-on-year increase.

This surge in criminal activity has continued to plague communities, with persistent retail crime posing significant challenges.

Undercover guards detain thousands, but police response remains inadequate

Despite efforts to combat crime, Co-op’s covert guards detained 3,361 criminals in 2023.

While this marks a proactive approach, the company revealed that two-in-five detained criminals managed to evade consequences, with police failing to attend to incidents.

Although there have been improvements in police response rates since the introduction of the Retail Crime Action Plan, much work remains to be done to ensure effective collaboration between the retail industry and law enforcement.

Ten-point plan proposed to address retail crime epidemic

A new report commissioned by Co-op and authored by Professor Emmeline Taylor proposes a comprehensive ten-point plan to tackle the escalating issue of retail crime.

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By GlobalData

Central to these recommendations is the proposal to establish attacking a shopworker as a standalone offence, urging Members of Parliament to support the amendment to the Criminal Justice Bill.

Co-op aims to mobilise its vast network of colleagues and members to advocate for this crucial legal protection for shopworkers.