Usdaw has called for local Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnerships to do more to help retailers stop verbal and physical abuse of staff.

Usdaw has urged MPs to intervene in their constituencies and galvanise the partnerships between police, local authorities, residents and businesses into action.

The move was sparked by a poll of union activists that showed 94% had never heard of CDRPs, which were set up in 1998 to tackle anti-social behaviour, and 93% believed their store had never had any contact with one.

"We want MPs to bring together the community to tackle antisocial shoppers who make our members' lives a living hell in some stores," said Usdaw general secretary John Hannett. "Our members understand that the partnerships have wide-ranging powers to tackle abusive shoppers but every store has different problems so MPs leading this discussion will be crucial."

Usdaw has also launched a new campaign - 'It's Your Store. Respect It' - aimed at shoppers who attack store staff verbally. It forms part of Usdaw's ongoing Freedom From Fear campaign, which is designed to cut the 10,000 assaults on staff every year.

"The campaign aims to reach a small minority who think it's acceptable to verbally abuse shop staff with almost unbelievable venom," said Hannett.Ten attacks on store staff

Customer drove car at trolley boy because he was in the way

Store manager rammed with a wheelchair

Trolley boy beaten up by thugs in car park

Store worker poked in back with walking stick by customer wanting attention

Another verbally abused by customer because a product was not on counter

Store worker followed out of work and abused in bus station

Worker repeatedly called "stupid" in a loud voice

Cans of drinks thrown at checkout worker who refused to serve drunken customer

Security guard threatened with knife by shoplifter

Cashier ending shift told "that's right, f**k off home now the queue's longer"

Source: Usdaw