John Lewis & Partners Christmas Shop

Source: John Lewis

The BRC has called for consideration in what is ‘an incredibly complex and challenging time of year’ for retail workers

The MD of Poundland has joined the BRC in calling on the public to be kind and considerate to retail workers in the busy Christmas period.

Along with UKHospitality, the BRC is calling for consideration as staff work extra hard to keep shelves stocked and drinks served.

It follows a recent Usdaw survey finding that in the last 12 months, 65% of retail staff experienced verbal abuse and 42% had been threatened by a customer.

“As the clock counts down to Christmas Day, retail stores and websites will become increasingly busy,” said BRC CEO Helen Dickinson.

“People in retail are working hard to look after customers, helping them find what they need, keeping shelves stocked and delivering goods. While tensions can run high, any mistreatment of our colleagues will not be tolerated.

“Confrontations, be it verbal abuse or physical assault, can take a huge toll on victims, their families and their colleagues. ‘Tis the season to shop kind.”

Poundland MD Austin Cooke said: “We wholeheartedly back the BRC’s call for kindness from everyone shopping in stores over the coming weeks. Our colleagues go above and beyond at this time of year to look after customers.

“We know a little kindness and appreciation for that hard work will make all the difference as they do everything they can to make Christmas in our stores as special as it can be.”

UKHospitality CEO Kate Nicholls added: “Christmas is a time for friends and family to come together, so naturally venues will be busier as we all look to go for a drink or have a meal out.

“Our staff work incredibly hard over the busy festive period to make sure everyone can enjoy the brilliant hospitality experiences the UK is known for, and they deserve to be treated with kindness and respect.

“We’d urge customers to do just that and not let any frustrations boil over into mistreatment of staff. Any poor treatment of staff should not be tolerated.”