Over six in 10 retail workers ‘feel lonely’

Lonely man

Over six in 10 people (63%) working in the retail and wholesale sectors feel always, often or sometimes lonely. That’s the stark finding of new research released by the British Red Cross.

The Red Cross polled over 4,000 UK adults and found that a third (33%) of people working in retail and wholesale don’t have colleagues they feel close to or can talk to about their loneliness.

The findings of the research suggest a lack of meaningful social connections could be contributing to people’s feelings of loneliness and isolation as in the retail and wholesale sector:

  • Almost half (47%) of people say they often feel alone, like they have no one to turn to
  • Half (50%) of those who do have people they feel close to or can rely on say those people live far away from them
  • Over a fifth of people (21%) don’t have friends they feel close to or can talk to

The survey also found that of those in the sector who felt lonely:

  • Over six in ten (62%) said their loneliness is having a negative impact on their life, and 64% worry their loneliness will get worse
  • Almost two thirds (65%) often feel completely alone when surrounded by people
  • Over a third (35%) of people said they have no strategies for coping with their loneliness

Zoë Abrams, Executive Director of Communications and Advocacy at British Red Cross commented: “Loneliness and social isolation doesn’t discriminate. Life circumstances can change in the blink of an eye, meaning it can happen to anyone, no matter your age or background.

“We all need someone to turn to in a crisis, but the findings of our research suggest that there are many people in our communities feeling they lack meaningful, human connections. This will be concerning for all of us to hear, no matter where we live in the UK, or with whom.

“Every one of us would want someone to reach out to us if we found ourselves all alone. People who need our help may be closer than we think and could feel much more connected if we offer them our kindness.”