We are committed to tackling violence and abuse toward shop workers; everyone has the right to feel safe at work.
On 21 January I announced that we will launch a call for evidence to strengthen our understanding of this issue. We will launch this shortly, before the Offensive Weapons Bill completes its passage through Parliament. We will ensure that interested parties have sufficient time to respond and that the analysis and subsequent Government response is taken forward promptly.
To support this, we are providing £50,000 for a sector-led communications campaign to raise awareness of this issue. We are finalising plans for this campaign and will announce further details shortly.
On 12 February I chaired a meeting of the National Retail Crime Steering Group (NRCSG) which focused exclusively on this issue. Agenda items included a discussion on the scope and direction of the call for evidence, and the NRCSG’s workplan on tackling violence and abuse, including in relation to the police response. My response to the Rt Hon member’s letter of 22 January was sent on 12th March 2019 and sets out plans for this work in more detail. A copy of this letter has been placed in the House library.