BIDs & Business Crime: A Manifesto
Yesterday (26th September 2018) David Wilson, the NABCP partnership manager, attended the NBCS BID’s Manifesto Launch in London. This is what was contianed in their Manifesto.
BIDs & Business Crime: A Manifesto
This Manifesto has been written on behalf of the retail industry, business leaders and local SME’s, by a not for profit business intelligence exchange with the desired intention of driving national consistency by Business Improvement Districts in crime management workings, supporting all retailers during these challenging trading and crime conditions.
As the number of Business Improvement Districts (BIDs) continues to grow (approaching 300), and funding from the levy businesses pay is estimated to be in the region of £100m a year, there is a desire from the business community to ensure that a reasonable proportion of this is dedicated to tackling business crime. Many businesses support BID’s and agree the funding as they want to create an attractive, safe and secure environment for customers, staff and visitors.
There is a recognition that the scope and scale of BIDs varies enormously; from those that have £multi-million budgets to those that rely on volunteers. In addition, the budget and resources needed to be dedicated to business crime will vary from place to place according to need and perception.
The overall aim is to make BID areas better trading locations, more attractive to customers and users, and therefore thriving places. There is also a desire from the NBCS to enhance the relationship and engagement between BIDs and many of their levy payers (NBCS members). The business community must be engaged at a local, regional and national level. The BIDs Foundation, the ATCM and British BIDs all have been consulted as part of the process in drawing up this Manifesto, alongside Revo, the ACS and others.
BIDs have pointed out how the reduction in funding available to local authorities and policing in their areas is causing their businesses to request greater efforts to address safety, security and crime reduction issues. But if BIDs fail to respond to this, it could adversely impact the trading environment and lead to business closures.
Crime comes in many forms and, as the recent BRC report shows, the increases in violence towards staff is a major concern. Retailers want their staff to be able to work free from fear of threats and violence, which is an increasing priority. Therefore, protecting their staff as well as their stock and premises is a major concern for all business who want a centre that is safe and welcoming throughout the day and night. Not only that but finding ways to combat public safety issues such drugs, alcohol, begging and rough sleeping will all have an impact on the trading environment and indirectly affect businesses.
It is not just retail that is suffering. All businesses that operate in our towns and cities day and night are impacted. At a time when Police numbers are at record lows, the business community recognises that they also have a role to play in putting into place effective measures. That is why they are supporting NBCS, Business Crime Reduction Partnerships (BCRP’s) and increasingly, BID’s. This Manifesto is aimed at BID’s to ensure that the investment being made by businesses in the 300 BID’s operating in the UK is made in the most appropriate, proportionate and efficient way.
BRC Retail Crime Survey 2017 https://brc.org.uk/media/249703/2017-crime-survey-short-story_fa_63_v11.pdf
Tim Edwards Group Profit Protection Director for JD Sports said, ”BID’s represent an excellent vehicle in which retail business can collaborate to make respective Town Centres pleasant and safe places to both shop and work. However, there is a concern that previously some BID models didn’t focus enough resources on the ‘safety and security’ element. Therefore, a new manifesto is being launched today including the provision that a suitable proportion of the BID levy is spent on safety and security. With the recent British Retail Consortium figures reporting a doubling of incidents of workplace violence now is the time for us to act together and ensure that the BID levy is spent appropriately, whether that is for the introduction of Uniformed patrols, funding a Crime Reduction Partnership, updating Town Centre CCTV, or maybe in some situations all three! It’s our money let’s use it to safeguard our staff and our businesses together”.
He went on to say, “JD Sports invests in 220 BID’s at a cost of £400,000 each year”
Martin Blackwell in his presentation at the event said that with over 300 BID’s investment nationally is probably in excess of £100 million.
At the launch Martin also gave the details of a recent business survey regarding what they see as their main issues. The top 3 were:
1. Violence against staff, 2. Anti-social behaviour, 3. Customer Safety