The shop workers union, Usdaw, have launched a petition on the Government and Parliament website calling for legislation to protect retail workers from threatening behaviour.
This is an issue that impacts on Nationwide employees too. Verbal and aggressive behaviour is something that our colleagues in branches and contract centres have been contending with for some time. Over the last few months the number of reported cases has increased, and some of our branch colleagues have been subjected to the most appalling and abhorrent behaviour from members of the public.
We are therefore urging all NGSU members to sign the petition and write to their MP asking them to support the call for legislation and that this is extended to include bank and building society employees. When you sign the petition, you’ll receive an e-mail with contact details for your MP.
You can sign the petition here.
The petition reads:
Protect Retail Workers from Abuse, Threats and Violence.
Enact legislation to protect retail workers. This legislation must create a specific offence of abusing, threatening or assaulting a retail worker. The offence must carry a penalty that acts as a deterrent and makes clear that abuse of retail workers is unacceptable.
Throughout the Coronavirus outbreak, retail workers have been spat at, threatened with infection of Coronavirus and physically assaulted. Since the start of the outbreak, the average retail worker has been assaulted, threatened or abused every 6.5 days, more than double the rate of incidents compared to 2019.
Key workers across retail have been undervalued for too long. We need to recognise the valuable contribution of these workers and ensure they are safe whilst undertaking essential work.