The first episode in a new series of the controversial Channel 4 programme Sleepers revealed the vulnerability of Asian c-store operators to racially motivated abuse and attacks. Thursday's show followed undercover reporter Saira Khan who assumed the role of an Asian shopkeeper in Langley Mill, near Nottingham, for three months. Khan's family is from Pakistan but she was born and grew up in Britain. During her stint as a shopkeeper, she was subjected to persistent verbal abuse, threats and broken windows. She said: "The fact I was subjected to weeks of abuse made me realise people don't see me as British and all that they see is the colour of my skin." The Association of Convenience Stores said violence against its membership was on the increase, and while it applauded government grants to fund town centre CCTV programmes, it said problems were being pushed further out into the suburbs. Public affairs manager James Lowman said: "Many retailers are open until late at night and feel increasingly vulnerable." {{NEWS }}