Tougher penalties for assaulting shopworkers
assault shopworkers in Scotland could get tougher penalties if a new
bill is successful. The bill is being brought by Hugh Henry
MSP and is supported by Usdaw. It calls for the assault of
shopworkers to be recognised as an aggravated crime, as it currently
is for front line workers such as the emergency services. The Union
is also campaigning for the same protection for shopworkers in
England and Wales.
Hugh Henry MSP said:- "Violent physical assaults against
workers serving the public in Scotland are an all too common
phenomenon. While progress has been made in strengthening criminal
penalties for assaults against some workers, too many still lack
sufficient protection at work. The Emergency Workers Act 2005
sought to provide additional protection to certain groups of workers
by introducing tougher penalties for those found guilty of
assaulting, hindering or obstructing those workers. This proposed
legislation seeks to apply the protections contained within the
Emergency Workers Act to any worker who provides a face to face
service to the public."
John Hannett, Usdaw General Secretary, added:- "Shopworkers
provide a vital service to the public, but they are all too often
seen as an easy target for violence and abuse. Our latest survey
showed that 1 in 10 shopworkers has been assaulted whilst at work.
Usdaw is supporting Hugh Henry's bill through the Scottish
parliament and we have started campaigning for a similar law in
England and Wales."
Since the introduction of the Emergency Workers Act, the number of
assaults on emergency staff has fallen and the number of convictions
has risen. This is alongside a rise on assaults on workers not
covered by the act.
Due to sufficient support from MSPs, The Workers (Aggravated
Offences) Bill can move forward. It is due to be drafted by early
May 2010 and is backed by the unions Usdaw, Unite, Unison, CWU and
CLOSE COMBAT PROFESSIONAL TIM LARKIN CALLS FOR CHANGE IN UK
“THE current UK
self-defence laws work only against the people that are of no threat
to society,” says Tim Larkin, founder of Las Vegas-based
self-defence school, Target Focus Training.
The Las Vegas-based self-defense expert has criticised the police
after former pop star Myleene Klass was warned by officers for
waving a kitchen knife to scare off intruders who had broken into
the garden of her Hertfordshire home. Klass who acted on instinct to
protect her daughter, was told that she could be the one liable for
prosecution for brandishing the knife.
“When there are no law enforcement units at the ready, one has
to question why the potential victims that attempt to protect
themselves are constantly portrayed by the law enforcement and media
as extremists If Miss Klass
had not scared them off, and they had caused harm to her and her
child, would she be applauded for her restraint by these same
Larkin has joined in the call for a change in Britain’s laws on
self-defence. “Miss Klass is an easy target for law
enforcement to intimidate into not grabbing a kitchen knife in a
desperate attempt to scare off 2 teenage miscreants who were
illegally on her property. It’s much
harder for the law enforcement community to deliver that
‘intimidating threat’ to the thugs that grab knives to rob, maim,
and kill others.” said Larkin, who has taught Navy
SEALS and FBI hostage teams in hand-to-hand combat.
Larkin has been doing a tour of the highest crime areas of Britain
including Greater Manchester, London, West Midlands, Nottinghamshire
and Humberside. He recently caused controversy by bringing Target
Focus Training to British citizens, teaching in a 2 day seminar in
Slough on the use of ‘ultimate violence’ in self defence.
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