Californians for Safe Stores and neighborhoods
Get the facts
Retail Theft is an urgent crisis that requires immediate attention to ensure the safety of our communities.
Sadly, because retail theft has increased throughout the state, neighborhood stores have been forced to reduce hours or even shut down to protect the safety of their employees and local shoppers. Not only does this impact businesses and local economies, it hurts the residents who depend on the goods and services neighborhood stores provide — like groceries, medicine and everyday household items.
Californians Retailers, through our California for Safe Stores and Neighborhoods Campaign, is at the forefront of advocating for policies to protect retail employees, customers and the neighborhoods in which retailers operate free from criminal activity.
CalRetailers secured $300 million over the next three years (2023 – 2026) for Organized Retail Crime including:
– Permanent funding for the CHP ORC Task Forces
– Increasing the number of CHP ORC Task Forces from three to five
– Funding dedicated to ORC prosecutors for each CHP ORC Task Force
– Establishing local law enforcement grants and vertical prosecution grants for Retail Theft
In the Digital Age, the “fencing” of stolen goods has become all too easy. By setting up third-party accounts under fake names, ORC rings are exploiting online marketplaces and the anonymity many of them provide to offload their stolen goods. Cal Retailers sponsored legislation SB 301 (Skinner-D), which passed the Legislature and was signed by Governor Newsom.
SB 301 is the California version of the INFORM Consumer Act providing transparency within online marketplaces giving retailers and law enforcement tools to ensure stolen goods are not sold.
Today, many thieves view retail theft as a low-risk/high-reward crime, knowing they face low odds of arrest or serious consequences. This situation only worsens as frustrated business owners and citizens give up on reporting thefts. We need to change the message.
By strengthening laws against repeat offenders, we can deter serial theft and encourage responsive intervention from law enforcement, retailers and our communities, providing sentence discretion.
California’s rehabilitation programs for habitual shoplifters are underutilized. We need to strengthen and reform diversion programs for our most vulnerable populations, those with behavioral issues, drug addictions or are unhoused. By diverting repeat offenders into rehabilitation programs as an alternative to jail, we can provide an intervention point to connect people to services that can improve their circumstances.
Retail Theft has quickly become one of the highest profile and top of mind issues in California.
Our focus is to promote policies that will protect the safety of our neighborhoods and communities while providing services and interventions for our most vulnerable populations.