Shop and emergency workers are physical attacked on average nearly 60 times every single day in Scotland, new research reveals.
Analysis by 1919 Magazine, the monthly justice and social affairs publication, has uncovered the scale of the crisis, with an average of 58.2 attacks recorded every day where data is available.
Figures released by the Scottish government reveal there have already been more than 500 convictions under the Protection of Workers Act, which came into force in 2021.
In the 11 months to November 2023 there were 2,233 assaults recorded – the equivalent of around seven per day.
Scottish Grocers’ Federation Chief Executive Pete Cheema told 1919: “This information comes to light amidst a torrent of widespread shop theft, some of which involves organised crime groups, reports of staff resigning because they fear for their safety, and suspected losses worth millions of pounds to local businesses.
“Crime against retailers is a clear and present threat and current economic conditions, alongside budgetary strains on the police, have caused the situation to worsen further.”
Scottish Labour MSP Daniel Johnson, who introduced the Protection of Workers Bill to Holyrood, added: “These shocking figures show how many shopworkers face violence and harassment at work.
“Retail crime in Scotland is reaching crisis point and retail staff are bearing the brunt.”