"'Tis the season to be kind," say hospitality bosses

UKHospitality (UKH) and the British Retail Consortium are urging the public to be kind and considerate to hospitality and retail workers, as well as fellow customers, when dining or drinking out or doing their shopping, throughout the festive period. 

The plea comes as violence and abuse against those in customer service continues to climb, with a recent Usdaw survey showing that in the last 12 months, 65% of retail staff experienced verbal abuse and 42% have been threatened by a customer. 

Christmas is a challenging time of year for the retail and hospitality sectors, with restaurants, pubs and bars being busier than normal, and employees working extra hard to ensure meals and drinks are served in good time, shelves are stocked and products are delivered. 

Nonetheless, everyone must play their part in creating a friendly and enjoyable atmosphere for customers and staff this Christmas, with industry bodies calling for patience, kindness and consideration during the busiest time of year. 

Kate Nicholls, chief executive of UKH, comments: "Christmas is a time for friends and family to come together, so naturally venues will be busier as we all look to go for a drink or have a meal out. Our staff work incredibly hard over the busy festive period to make sure everyone can enjoy the brilliant hospitality experiences the UK is known for and they deserve to be treated with kindness and respect. We'd urge customers to do just that and not let any frustrations boil over into mistreatment of staff. Any poor treatment of staff should not be tolerated."

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