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Council sees rise in abuse towards staff

COPELAND Council is reminding people it has a zero tolerance approach to abuse towards its staff.

The council has noticed an increase in customers verbally abusing staff who are trying to assist them.

Copeland Mayor, Mike Starkie, said: " Our teams encounter swearing, shouting and insults, and we have noticed a recent rise in these incidents.

"We take them very seriously. Our staff will always do their best to help people with their queries. We understand that sometimes people are frustrated if we haven't delivered a service as they would have wished.

"But there is never any excuse for abusing our staff. It is not acceptable for them to be sworn at, called liars or told they don't know how to do their job. Everyone deserves a safe and respectful work environment and that includes all our council teams. We will always speak to people calmly, respectfully and fairly, and we expect the same."

The council would like to remind residents of its 'unacceptable behaviour' policy, which can be viewed on its website at https://www.copeland.gov.uk/attachments/unacceptable-behaviour-policy.

It states that employees should feel safe and not be exposed to unnecessary stress, harassment or violence because of customers' behaviour. 

Customers who do not modify abusive behaviour when asked could lose the opportunity to contact the council, and serious threats, abuse, or physical violence will be reported to the police.