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FWD: Wholesale needs the same protection

Published by Wholesale News - 11th April 2024

While the sector has welcomed the government’s plan to crack down on retail crime, it is clear those working in wholesale need to benefit from the same protective measures

Announced on 10 April, new rules mean that those who assault a retail worker will be prosecuted as a standalone criminal offence in the Criminal Justice Bill. This follows a campaign calling for more action to better protect retail staff by Matt Vickers MP and some of the UK’s biggest retail names.

FWD has called for clarification regarding the definition of ‘retail worker’. James Bielby, FWD CEO, said: “While this is a step in the right direction, we look forward to seeing the government’s definition of ‘retail worker’ and will work to ensure that colleagues working in the wholesale sector are included in the definition and protected by these new measures.

“Ahead of further details being finalised, we call on the government to adopt an inclusive definition to protect those who face violence daily in our sector when simply doing their job. Crime in the wholesale sector is at an all-time high and we hope that this offence sends a clear message that violence against colleagues in our sector will be met with tough consequences.”

Dr Jason Wouhra OBE, CEO of Lioncroft Wholesale, agrees: “While there is a very real need to protect retailers who are facing threats and violence, the problem does not stop on the streets. Wholesale workers also face violence daily, simply for carrying out the work they are employed to do, and this is unacceptable.

“I support FWD’s request for clarification on the definition of ‘retail worker’ to encompass those who work across the supply chain and are subject to the same threats. We know crime is at a record high and we need to take action, right across the industry.”

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