Call for tougher line on violence at work

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Greater protection is needed to prevent people in the hospitality industry being exposed to violence at work, a South Yorkshire MP has urged.

Barnsley Central’s Dan Jarvis has called for an amendment to new legislation currently being debated in Parliament which would create a new offence for assaulting someone selling alcohol.

Mr Jarvis cited the 300 shopworkers – many of them in licensed retailers – violently assaulted while at work in the UK every day.

According to a survey carried out by Usdaw, a shopworker is verbally abused, threatened or physically attacked every minute of every day. Labour MPs voted for the amendment, which was also supported by the Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers, but the reform was voted down by MPs from the opposition.

Mr Jarvis said: “I put this forward on behalf of hundreds of thousands of public-facing workers who go to work every day but have to endure the fear of violence or actual violence just because of the nature of the work they are doing.

“This measure would have to granted protection to bar staff and people working in off-licences, who often have to endure these types of assault more than most.”