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Peak industry body the National Retail Association (NRA) has welcomed the South Australian government’s move to implement tougher penalties for people who abuse retail workers, coming into effect today.

Chief Executive Dominique Lamb said the NRA supports all efforts to tackle the abuse of retail workers.

“South Australia’s decision to inflict harsher penalties to address this issue sends a clear message to the community; that this is an issue we take very seriously, and such behaviour will not be tolerated.

“The new rules that impose longer prison sentences to people convicted of basic assault against a retail worker should work to prevent future incidents from happening.”

The NRA has been working with the Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees Association (SDA) in multiple states and territories in support of this issue.

“Retail workers, many of whom are young or female, are simply doing their job. Under no circumstance should retail staff be on the receiving end of either verbal or physical abuse. It not only impacts their physical safety but also their mental health and wellbeing.

“We are pleased South Australia has made this move, and we hope other states and territories will soon follow.

“We urge authorities to be vigilant with any customer who chooses to engage in abusive behaviour that threatens the safety of workers.”


The National Retail Association is the voice of modern retail, representing more than 60,000 stores across Australia.  It has been serving businesses in the retail and fast-food sectors for close to 100 years.

For more information, contact the NRA Media unit at 0467 792 013.