Local shops have welcomed proposals to give local businesses new rights to secure action from Police when they are the victim of anti-social behaviour.

The move comes after a long running campaign from the Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) to make violence, abuse and vandalism against local shops a higher priority for neighbourhood Police.

The introduction of a ‘Community Trigger’ was announced in the White Paper published by Home Secretary Teresa May today (May 22). This will mean that anytime there are five complaints from local households or businesses the Police will be required to meet with victims and intervene to tackle the problems identified. The original Home Office proposal only included complaints from households and ACS argued strongly for the measure to include local businesses.

James Lowman, ACS chief executive, said: “For too long anti-social behaviour against business owners and their staff has been seen as somehow less damaging than crime against other parts of the community.  We are pleased that the Home Office has listened to our concerns and agreed with us. 

“This is a clear recognition that business owners and their staff are also victims of anti-social behaviour and that they can play a valuable role in helping to provide the evidence needed to deter, catch and convict those that commit these crimes.”