Local businesses came out to a meeting hosting by Riehl Securities yesterday to discuss the issues with shoplifters in the community.

Representatives from approximately 24 businesses asked questions of what more can be done.

They’re spending money on surveillance equipment as a form of loss prevention, but get frustrated when shoplifters are caught on camera and nothing gets done.

Kerri Riehl, from Riehl Securities explained that although the Crown doesn’t prosecute shoplifting cases, store can ban individuals from their store.

She also said the unfortunate part is some of these are repeat offenders who never get a criminal record, then can go apply to work with vulnerable people and put them at risk.

The biggest challenge is the loss businesses face when stuff gets stolen.

They have to recover the cost by increasing prices or cutting back on staff.

Another huge risk to businesses is the safety of their staff and customers. Riehl strongly recommended to business owners to not try to apprehend shoplifters.  Some of them could be high, violent or suffering from a mental illness and having an episode.  People must be properly trained to do security on this level.

A survey was handed out and businesses were to share their views on some of the options and express concerns they had with the issue.

Many showed interest in a local database identifying those who are caught shoplifting and are banned from other store.

Another meeting will be planned in the near future.