1. News
June 1, 2022

BRC study shows tripling of violence against UK retail workers

Abuse levels increased even as fewer shops were open for large parts of the year due to pandemic restrictions.

Violence and abuse against retail workers in the UK have tripled during the Covid-19 pandemic, according to the British Retail Consortium’s (BRC) annual retail crime survey.

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The number of daily incidents grew from 455 in 2019/20 to 1,301 in 2020/21, with 125 incidents being deemed ‘violent’ by the trade association.

The survey found that the increase was concentrated in a significantly reduced number of stores and retail operations, as many businesses were closed due to Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.

They also occurred while retail workers were on the frontline of the pandemic.

In addition to its impact on people, retail crime cost a total of £1.5bn ($1.8bn), which includes £663m ($835m) incurred by customer theft and £715m ($901m) spent on crime prevention.

In response to these findings, the BRC will partner with Police and Crime Commissioners across England and Wales to increase awareness of this issue.

Usdaw general secretary Paddy Lillis said: “This BRC survey is further confirmation of the scale of the problem retail staff face on a daily basis and back up findings in Usdaw’s latest research.

“Our research found that nine in ten retail workers suffered abuse from customers, with far too many experiencing threats and violence.

“Particularly concerning was the one-third increase in assaults, up from 9% in 2020 to 12% in 2021.

“So, it is extremely worrying that nearly two-thirds said they were not confident that reporting these issues will make any difference.”

In 2020, the BRC launched a pledge that sought to protect shopworkers from violence after finding more than 400 daily incidents of violence and abuse involving retail workers.

Last May, a coalition of more than 30 retail organisations in the UK called on the country’s government to take harsher action against individuals assaulting and attacking shop workers.

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Walmart has rounded out its fiscal year with a strong set of numbers that show it has taken supply chain disruption, rising costs, heavy inflation, and various other problems in its stride. There is comfortable growth on both the top and bottom lines, which is extremely respectable given tough prior year comparatives. Walmart hiring is slowing down as compared to hiring in the months of April and March in 2022. Walmart posted close to 40,000 vacancies in March and 30,000 in April, which has gone below 10,000 in June 2022. Walmart Company Filings has most of the mentions related to the ESG and COVID-19 themes in 2021. ESG has more than 300 mentions in the company’s 2021 filings which indicates the rising focus on ESG-related issues. Our report on Walmart: Going Beyond Company Disclosures, demonstrates GlobalData Explorer’s ability to:  
  • Track and monitor a company’s movements through alternative indicators to gain insights into the strategy before it is disclosed by the company
  • Gain insight into a company’s capital deployment strategy, by assessing historical deal volumes and specific transactions executed by the company, in addition to identifying sectors of focus
  • Go beyond basic financial information, to access key industry-relevant indicators for a company and how these have progressed over time
Don’t miss out on key market insights that can help optimize your next investment – read the report now.
by GlobalData
Enter your details here to receive your free Report.