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Earlier this month, longstanding SAS Group client, the National Retail Association, launched a ground-breaking report into retail worker wellbeing during COVID-19.

The SAS Group were successful in obtaining extensive media coverage across print, radio, TV and online. This included the following: 220 pieces of coverage; publication across 202 unique media outlets; a reach of 2.64 million people; and the equivalent of $449 of advertising spend.

The Health and Wellbeing of Australian Retail Workers revealed the following impacts and risks to the sector’s 1.5 million workforce during COVID-19:

  • Retail workers have been at the frontline of the COVID-19 pandemic, weathering increased risk, stress and abuse to keep Australia fed and safe. 

  • Retail workers are experiencing increased retail crime and related violence, with over 85% experiencing verbal or physical abuse while trying to prevent crime. Retail crime costs Australian jobs and up to $9 billion every year. 

  • Retail workers are experiencing increased customer abuse and aggression, seemingly accepted as normal by society but creating long-lasting wellbeing impacts and increasing exit from the profession. 

  • Retail workers are on the frontline of dealing with societal issues like ‘ad-hoc counsellors’, such as managing individuals affected by drug or substance abuse. 

  • Up to 100,000 retail workers are experiencing domestic and family violence, with 1 in 6 Australian women experiencing violence, 20% of these women say the violence continues at work, and many lose their jobs. 

  • Retail workers represent a high proportion of smokers given their high-risk demographics and smoking rates are no longer going down. 

  • Retail workers are more likely to have poor nutrition and lack of non-work exercise, creating long-term health impacts. 

Further information on the report and the health and wellbeing of Australian retail workers can be found at the dedicated website:

NRA COVID Media Event

National Retail Association CEO Dominique Lamb speaking at the launch on August 4.


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