The new Protection of Workers Bill has been introduced with the aim to reduce incidents of violence threats and abuse against workers whose job brings them into face to face contact with member of the public.

It has been revealed that the Bill will create a new offence relating to assaults on public facing workers and will carry a maximum sentence of 12 moths and a £10,000 fine.

Today (5 November) marks the start of Respect for Shopworkers Week and retail union Usdaw is calling on MPs to show their support by backing the new Bill that will give shopworkers legal protection against violence and abuse.

Usdaw General Secretary John Hannett, said:

“Respect for Shopworkers Week is a great opportunity for retail staff to highlight to both colleagues and customers that abuse, threats and violence against people trying to do their job is totally unacceptable and should never be tolerated.

“Despite our Freedom From Fear campaign helping to raise awareness of the problem and reducing the number of incidents, it is a sad fact that every minute of every day a shopworker somewhere is assaulted, threatened or abused. That iss why our members now think it is time to give shopworkers extra legal protection. We hope MPs will support them by backing the Protection of Workers Bill.”

Respect for Shopworkers Week, is expected to see Usdaw activists in shops and supermarkets across the country holding campaign events urging colleagues and customers to ask their MP to back the new Bill.

The Protection of Workers Bill will receive a second reading on 1 February next year and it has been revealed that Usdaw members will be lobbying their MPs to support the Bill at second reading and asking them to sign Early Day Motion 574 which calls on the Government to back the Bill.