The Workers Union is calling for tougher measures to protect delivery drivers from violence and abuse.
The announcement came after a spate of well-publicised incidents of attempted theft and violent acts towards them.
In a tersely-worded statement, a spokesperson for the union said that the perpetrators must be swiftly brought to justice: ‘Last month we launched a campaign to help raise awareness of the mental health issues that delivery drivers are experiencing. Time pressure from impatient customers and unsympathetic bosses all have a role to play in this – as do threats of violence and intimidation. As we can see, in some cases the threats become a reality, leaving the victims traumatised and without any way of supporting themselves.
‘The people who commit these offences must be swiftly dealt with by the courts. Only then can we have confidence that delivery drivers will receive the protections they deserve.’
Sadly, violence towards professionals trying to carry out their duties is widespread. Recent news – and this union’s own research – suggest that it is on rise – particularly in service-related situations.
A report from The Guardian newspaper, for example, revealed that NHS workers had been verbally accosted and spat at by patients reluctant to wear face masks when requested. In the same way, doctor’s surgeries have reported a rise in aggression and abuse.
The Workers Union on the Right to Work in Safety
There is no excuse for violence, abuse or threatening behaviour against anyone trying to carry out their job. Many of the workers who have been most affected are those who’ve have spent the last 15 months on the COVID frontline. They are the heroic people that carried on getting our online purchases to us or looked after us in surgeries and hospitals – despite the elevated health risks.
Their bravery and sacrifices have made them the pumping arteries of this country throughout the most difficult period in recent memory.
They have a right to work in safety, without running a daily gauntlet of abuse. So we’re calling on company chiefs to implement extra security measures, to have a “compensation pool” of cash ready to help those unable to work because of physical attacks or theft of property; and to help the police and law enforcement agencies to bring those responsible to justice.
The Workers Union – fighting for social justice, fighting for you