Letter To Editor: We need more appropriate sentencing for crime against retail colleagues


Dear Editor,

In September, we joined 22 of the UK’s major retailers and associations in publishing an open letter in The Sunday Times to the Prime Minister calling for more effective legal protection for our colleagues from an ever-rising tide of abuse, threats and violence.

We now need your reader’s direct support to keep this momentum going.

Our store colleagues have been working tirelessly to protect customers during the pandemic. Despite their hard work, violence and threats have become part of the job – they do not deserve this.

As a regional, independent co-operative, we’ve been tackling crime from every angle – causes, prevention, reporting and justice. Although there have been some positive steps forward, more needs to be done.

Please consider writing to your MP, signing the national petition or viewing the film we put together of our colleagues’ experiences. This is a hard-hitting video we felt was essential to highlight the severity of the issue. Information on all of these actions can be found here: https://coop.ly/2GmP0MB.

If we all play our part and we all work together then we can stop this wave of violence which has been getting progressively worse over the last few years.

We need politicians, police and the rest of society to remember these crimes are not victimless. They affect real people.

Mark Smith
Chief Executive
Southern Co-op