Letter: Think of shop workers at Christmas

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Sir,

I want to gently remind your readers to remember that shopworkers are people as well.

They will be working really hard to make your shopping experience as stress-free and enjoyable as possible.

A recent Usdaw survey shows that every minute of every day another shop worker is verbally abused, threatened with violence or physically attacked.

Shop workers tell us that incidents are more frequent throughout the Christmas and New Year period when shops are busier, customers can be stressed and are more likely to take out their frustration on staff.

Talking to our members who work in retail, I know that verbal abuse cuts deep.

Many will go home after a shift upset about an unpleasant incident that took place at work that day and worried that it will happen to them again.

That is why Usdaw, the shop workers’ union, is running a Respect for Shopworkers campaign, asking customers to ‘Keep your Cool at Christmas’.

It’s a simple message, but remembering that shop workers are working extra hard at this time and treating them with respect will mean that everyone can have a happier Christmas.

Paddy Lillis,

General secretary,

Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers.