National Store Walk Month, an initiative conceived by the Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) and the National District Attorneys Association (NDAA), launched in September with the goal of forging an unprecedented partnership between local prosecutors and community retailers.
Throughout September, District Attorneys across the country walked retail stores in tandem with management teams, to foster understanding, exchange insights, and build synergistic strategies to address retail crime and other unlawful activities occurring in and around stores.
"Since 2002 The Home Depot has welcomed elected officials and local law enforcement for store walks to showcase the work of our associates,” said Scott Glenn, vice president of asset protection, The Home Depot. “As issues like organized retail crime continue to grow, we are proud to partner with RILA and other retailers during National Store Walk Month to meet with prosecutors in our local communities and build relationships that will directly support our efforts to keep our stores, customers, associates, and communities safe."
Since its debut in September, National Store Walk Month has paired RILA member retailers with district attorneys' offices for 80 store walks to discuss shared challenges and solutions to tackling retail crime and violence. Local prosecutors and retail management teams exchanged insights, shared best practices, and identified opportunities to work collaboratively to combat retail crime.
"This experience was more eye-opening than I thought it would be. Retailers are doing an incredible job on the front end, and this was a great opportunity to see how those of us in the criminal justice community can collaborate with retailers on the back end," said Frederick County State's Attorney J. Charles Smith III, President of the National District Attorneys Association.
Demand to participate was so strong among DAs' offices and retailers that the project has been extended through November.
"Ulta Beauty strongly believes in the power of partnerships and by working together, we know we can positively impact the communities we serve," said Julie Giblin, vice president loss prevention, Ulta Beauty. "As organized retail crime continues, retailers must work together with DA Offices, law enforcement, landlords, other retailers, solution providers and industry organizations to share learnings and insights to create change and progress. We appreciate the various District Attorneys for taking the time to engage with our loss prevention and store associates, learn about our crime mitigation strategies and discuss best practices that can aid criminal case prosecutions."