NFRN National President Mike Mitchelson (pictured left) laid bare the devastating impact that retail crime has on independent retailers when he met with his local MP, Justice Minister Rory Stewart, last Friday (July 13).

Mr Mitchelson told Mr Stewart how every retailer had the right to feel safe in their shops and live their lives free from crime when the Justice Minister visited his Brampton store and post office.

He also explained how police budget cuts and the lack of bobbies on the beat meant that retail crime victims were not getting the response times and service that they deserved.

After the visit, Mr Mitchelson tweeted: “It was good to meet up this afternoon with my MP Rory Stewart who also is Justice Minister to discuss issues affecting independent retailers, in particular retail crime and its effect on retailers. Thanks for taking the time to visit.”

Mr Stewart also tweeted: “Meeting Mike Mitchelson, the NFRN’s National President to discuss how to respond best to retail crime and shop theft. (And remembering the central role of Post Offices in rural life.)

The meeting came one month after Mr Mitchelson threw down a challenge to all NFRN members to raise awareness among all 650 MPs of retail crime.

In his inaugural speech to Annual Conference delegates in Torquay on June 12, Mr Mitchelson said: “I would like every MP – all 650 of them – to receive a visit from at least one NFRN member between now and Annual Conference next year.”

And he added: “And while we are doing this, let’s arrange meetings with Chief Constables and – in England and Wales – with our Police and Crime Commissioners too and send a very clear message that rising instances of retail crime and poor police responses can no longer be tolerated.”

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