I have pledged my support for the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers (Usdaw) campaign to prevent violence, threats and abuse against workers.
Usdaw’s survey of retail workers shows that half of shopworkers were verbally abused in the last year, with 29% being threatened with violence and 8% suffering physical assaults. A third of those suffering physical violence did not report the incident to their employer.
The trade union, which is one of the biggest trade union in the country representing 430,000 members. They represent members in:
• All major retailers
• Road transport
• Warehouses and distribution
• Food manufacturing
• Home shopping
• Plus a range of other industries.
Usdaw works with employers to achieve safety and security improvements in stores, and raise the issues of neighbourhood policing, retail crime and underage sales.
The ‘Freedom from Fear’ campaign seeks to make the working environment safer for workers by tackling violence and abuse from members of the public. The campaigns core message is ‘abuse is not part of the job’. This means that everyone has the right to go to work, carry out their job, and come home without having to face violence, threats or abuse whilst doing so.
This year the annual Respect for Shopworkers Week is taking place between 13-19 November.
The Christmas shopping season is approaching fast and this is traditionally the time of year that the number of incidents increases. A large number of people in Delyn work in the retail sector and they are facing abuse. That is why it is important that we raise awareness of the ‘Freedom from Fear’ campaign.
I want to see public facing workers protected from attacks and that is why I have tabled a motion in the House of Commons calling on the Government to produce legislation that imposes an additional penalty for those who assault workers in the course of their duties.
Anyone who has faced abuse in work should seek out help from their employer and report the incident to the police. No one should face abuse at work and I want to see the law tightened.