Crackdown on shoplifting.
The Australian Retailers Association (ARA) is supporting the Tasmanian Government’s plan to legislate bag check guidelines ahead of the Security and Investigations Agents Amendment Bill 2018 debate in Parliament this week. The proposed legislation fulfils the government’s election commitment to crackdown on shoplifting.
ARA executive director, Russell Zimmerman said the legislation will assist in alleviating the significant financial burden shoplifting places on small and large retailers.
“Retail industry turnover is over $310 billion across Australia and in Tasmania is in excess of $6.1 billion. With an approximate loss of $216 million from theft, this is an ongoing concern for retailers and the industry,” Zimmerman said.
“With Christmas around the corner, shoplifting is at its highest during this peak trading period. Current laws stipulate that retailers must employ a licensed security guard if they want to search a customer’s bag when on the business premises, which incurs further costs to retailers.”
The government will legislate to allow retailers large or small to authorise bag checks to be physically inspected by retail staff on condition of entry.
According to Zimmerman, the passing of the legislation will deliver certainty to consumers, assist in reducing retail theft and also protect consumers by ensuring bags checks are conducted in an appropriate and regulated manner.
“The ARA encourages all states and territories across Australia to follow the lead of NSW and Tasmania in implementing these guidelines,” he said.