By Jo Whitfield, Food CEO

Thanks again to everyone who shared their stories with the Home Office. The consultation closes at 11pm today and I’m so pleased with how we’ve responded. I know together, we’re really going to make a difference.

The aim of this call for evidence is to help the government understand the true scale of the issue, the measures that help prevent these crimes and how existing legislation is being used to tackle them. The Home Office will now have a look at all the responses to the consultation, come up with their findings and respond with a plan of action.

But what’s next for Co-op?

We’re trialling new things to help colleagues feel safer

We’re going to be putting our intelligent CCTV solution in more shops this year. This is an industry leading package where we work with partners to detect repeat offenders, gather evidence and work with the police to secure convictions.

We’re also trialling other things that will deter crime or help us share better evidence with the police. This is includes body worn cameras that are being tested currently and are being well received by colleagues and customers, new security tags for high value items that are almost impossible for offenders to remove without damaging the products, fog cannons for cash areas and tracker devices for other high value items like cigarettes.

Working with the community to tackle crime

Crime is a real issue in society and we can’t fix this alone. You may have seen our new partnership with Steel Warriors who we’ll be working with to help take knives off the streets and build community gyms with the melted down steel.

We’re also partnering up with the Damilola Taylor Trust to provide funding which will enable 25 young people from across London to go through a career and skills development programme. Take a look at my interview with Richard, Damilola’s dad, where I talk to him about what this partnership means to him.

Our community activity focuses on spaces, wellbeing and skills, all of which can be linked to creating safer colleagues and safer communities. We’ll also continue working with local causes that help tackle crime at its root, by addressing issues such as homelessness and food poverty.

Join the conversation! 3 Comments

  1. Well done Jo, your doing a fantastic job to raise awareness of the issues faced in our stores and other retailers relating to colleague and customer safety, and also raising the business profile as were leading the way in many campaigns and initiatives. #whatatrueleaderlookslike 😉

  2. It’s very good to see that we are taking colleague and customer safety seriously and investing in this.
    The Government have reduced the numbers of police by tens of thousands since 2010. Do we have any data available that would show if this reduction has increased the number of criminal incidents we see in store?
    If this is the case, this alongside the stories our store colleagues have shared will be powerful evidence that the government needs to start taking the safety of its citizens seriously.

  3. As of the 1st July, we no longer have a guard as our logged incidents were lower, probably because we have had a guard present! Watch those logged incidents rise as now we have no guard! & all we are hearing is we care about your safety! We are working 1 on 1 more so at many times only 1 person on shop floor

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Campaigning, Do what matters most, Stronger Co-op, Stronger Communities