The National Retail Association (NRA) has today urged the NSW Labor Opposition to re-think its policy announcement on abandoned shopping trolleys.
Over the weekend Opposition Leader Michael Daley announced that a Labor Government would empower councils to impound abandoned trolleys within three hours while massively increasing financial penalties.
NRA Manager of Industry Policy David Stout said that the policy details outlined by NSW Labor do not provide a large enough timeframe, duplicates existing processes and will send businesses broke.
“Retailers provide shopping trolleys as a service to consumers with the aim of making shopping for essential items as convenient as possible,” Mr Stout said.
“Increasing the penalties from $550 to $2,750 threatens to financially cripple many businesses.
“Retailers already have a natural incentive to retrieve all abandoned trolleys – the cost of replacing them – so whacking them with a heavy-handed and over the top fine will only result in many going broke.
“Many businesses already do a lot to ensure that abandoned trolleys are retrieved, and most brands have a 1800 number printed on the handle to help speed up the process.
“A three-hour collection timeframe is far too short and the NRA firmly believes that a 24-hour turnaround is more appropriate.
“There are already existing processes in place – particularly among large retailers – that effectively deal with identifying and retrieving abandoned trolleys that pose a safety risk. Moves to empower local councils to immediately impound shopping trolleys will not do anything to improve safety.
“We urge the NSW Labor Opposition to review their policy and revise it to something that is more practical and viable for the retail sector.”
The National Retail Association is Australia’s largest and most representative retail industry association. It has been serving businesses in the retail and fast food sectors for close to 100 years.
David Stout is available for interviews. Contact the NRA’s media unit on (07) 3240 0163.