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NBCC welcomes calls for retail crime to be prioritised

The National Business Crime Centre (NBCC) has welcomed the positive response to an open letter from the British Retail Consortium (BRC), calling for retail crime to be prioritised in an to the open letter addressed to all PCCs across England and Wales.

The NBCC has been working hard to raise awareness across law enforcement of the damage retail crime is causing to retailers, and also to the thousands of shop workers who are suffering rising levels of violence, abuse and anti-social behaviour.

This work has included the introduction a national information sharing agreement designed to allow both police and businesses to target those who cause the most harm.

The NBCC has also created a range of resources for retailers which can be accessed via its newly designed website, to help them take steps to prevent and reduce violence against their staff. A series of training videos for retail staff have been commissioned by the NBCC to empower employees in the areas of personal safety and de-escalation, saying no - refusing service, deterring and interacting with thieves and handling disruptive behaviour.

The NBCC are also working various partners to review the role of Business Crime Reduction Partnerships and Business Improvement Districts to see they can work with police to enhance the effectiveness of crime reduction efforts across the country.

As part of a joint approach to tackle retail crime and local crime issues, the NBCC launched the national Safer Business Action (SaBA) Day initiative, which is a joint approach by police, business, private security, Business Crime Reduction Partnerships (BCRPs) and Business Improvement Districts (BIDs), to deliver a targeted and robust response to retail crime with a high visibility response.

The objective of the day is to deliver a focussed operation with joint patrols, the targeted intervention of offenders and a range of crime prevention activities. The SaBA Days held so far have proved to be hugely successful in terms of identifying and dealing with prolific offenders, supporting retailers in protecting shopworkers and in developing local, trusted relationships leaving a legacy of partnership working.

Superintendent Patrick Holdaway, lead for the NBCC said: “We are supportive of the letter sent by the BRC and it was encouraging to see such a positive response from APCC Lead for Business and Retail Crime, Katy Bourne (Sussex PCC). Through our engagement with retailers and police forces we know that abuse, threats and physical violence are a real and present risk for those working in retail and we are committed to helping retail workers stay safe by equipping them with the tools and training to defuse and avoid conflict.

“Retail crime is likely to continue to rise in the run up to the festive season, that will result in more retail workers becoming victims of violence and abuse. It can also have significant implications for small high street retailers who simply cannot survive financially with the level of thefts and losses they are experiencing on a daily basis. The NBCC plays a pivotal role in bringing police, retailers and other agencies together to tackle retail crime in partnership across the country.”

To find out more about the work the NBCC is doing to tackle retail crime and to access the retail shopworker training videos visit Shopworker Videos (

You can read the response to the open letter from APCC Lead for Business and Retail Crime, Katy Bourne here: