The National Retail Association is working with retailers, industry experts, police and justice representatives to support businesses in taking proactive measures against retail crime.

Last week, Deputy CEO and Director of NRA Legal, Lindsay Carroll joined the Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees Association (SDA) at their Customer Aggression and Violence Roundtable. This follows a busy month after industry-leading retail crime events were held in New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia.

Since the inception of successful retail crime committees across Australia in 2012, National Retail has been at the coalface of facilitating an open dialogue between police, unions, landlords, loss prevention specialists and retail representatives. An unlikely collaboration between highly motivated people, united under the common goal of reducing retail crime, prioritising employee wellbeing and creating safer retail precincts.

These crime committees have informed and driven many retail crime initiatives and advocacy strategies that the National Retail Association has championed. Most recently, the National Retail has partnered with the SDA and SCCA to amplify the ‘No One Deserves a Serve’ campaign. Over 150 centres nationwide are on board, displaying the campaign across 3000+ screens, set to be seen 190 million times by consumers in the lead-up to Christmas.

Currently, only 10 percent of retail crime incidents are reported. We know there are barriers to reporting, however, in the lead-up to the Black Friday and Christmas period, we encourage retailers to report any incidents of retail crime. This will ensure police can better track repeat offenders, and organised crime incidents, which account for 65% of all retail crime.

In addition, National Retail has developed a Retail Crime Action Plan committed to enhancing advocacy initiatives in the technology and privacy space, improvements in reporting and intelligence on incidents, preventative measures, and stronger consequences and penalties through the legislative and justice systems.

We are advocating for stronger consequences to address retail crime and individual aggression, that is immediate and provides team members, customers, and landlords the confidence that these aggressive individuals can be effectively dealt with.

Our Retail Crime Action Plan signals the need for significant consequences for aggressive behaviour and organised retail criminals. These individuals are not customers, they are a threat to our precincts and need to be dealt with accordingly. This action plan enlists the support of all sectors and with an aim to remove this threat from our safe retail precincts.

As we head into the busiest retail season, National Retail strongly calls for all retailers, customers and the wider community to keep safety and security at the forefront of their minds to ensure we preserve the sanctity of our retail precincts.

We urge people to remember that for some this is a particularly stressful time, with rising interest rates, cost of living pressures and other personal challenges.

A reminder to customers during the Christmas season:

  • It is a chaotic time in shopping centres. If cashiers serve someone before you, it was not intentional, they are doing their best.
  • The queues are long, and staff are flat out, you will be served as quickly as possible.
  • This is a lot of employees first Christmas casual job; your patience gives them confidence.
  • When caught in a queue, the carpark is a nightmare, or the lift/escalator is out of order; your patience is appreciated.
  • Your words matter. Your behaviours matter.
  • You are responsible for the energy you bring into a space.
  • Please keep your cool this Summer, everyone is feeling the heat.