Suzy's Charter for Workplace Safety
An estimated 374,000 adults of working age in employment experience violence at work annually, including threats and physical assault[i]. The human costs of personal safety incidents for employers are far-reaching and can amount to as much as £6,500 for non-fatal injuries and £12,300 for ill-health per case, due to loss of productivity, insurance claims, administrative and legal costs and health and rehabilitation costs. In the case of fatalities, costs can soar to almost £100,000.[ii]
The loss of quality-of-life to the individual can be even more damaging, with ongoing impacts on health and wellbeing, loss of confidence and inability to return to the workplace. In one incident an employee describes the devastating effect of an incident of violence on their life:
“I challenged a shoplifter in the store car park and he pulled a knife on me and held it to my throat. I was the security colleague on duty and I wasn’t issued with a radio or a personal attack alarm. I now suffer from PTSD, anxiety and depression.”
Suky Bhaker, Acting CEO, Suzy Lamplugh Trust
‘It is unacceptable that anyone should face violence and aggression in any form whilst at work. We hope this Charter will help employees and employers create safer workplaces and we would encourage all organisations to work through the Charter a step at a time to make these important changes. Suzy Lamplugh Trust are ready to assist any organisation in the implementation of Suzy’s Charter.’
National Business Crime Centre:
‘Understanding and tackling violence and abuse in the workplace is a key objective for the National Business Crime Centre. We welcome evidence based initiatives from within industry and the charitable sector to contribute to this vital work and support the efforts of Suzy Lamplugh Trust. They have brought together both employers, employees and respective unions to raise awareness of these issues and identify a charter to help minimise the risk of violence.’
Dan Shears, National Health, Safety and Environment Director, GMB Union:
‘We strongly support Suzy’s Charter for Workplace Safety. GMB members work in a number of sectors where violence and aggression are known risks, and lone working is common. Suzy’s Charter gives clear guidelines on the steps that employers can take to reduce risks, and we will be doing our best to ensure that it is adopted in every workplace where we have members.’
James Lowman, Chief Executive, The Association of Convenience Stores:
'Convenience retailers are committed to ensuring the safety of their staff and have invested millions in crime prevention measures to protect their store and colleagues. We are proud to have collaborated on the development of the Charter, which will be a useful tool for retailers when thinking about the steps they can take to minimise risks and ensure that their staff feel safe and supported.
Retailers cannot tackle the problem of violence and abuse alone, they need to be supported by intervention from the Government, police and the justice system to tackle the root causes of offending, ensure that appropriate deterrents are in place and that perpetrators are brought to justice.'