Several Walmart employees witnessed a customer shoplifting and escorted him to a holding room in the back of the store. During his detention the customer decided it was time for him to leave. When the Walmart employees denied his request he reportedly brandished a firearm, threating the employees.
According to comments by the employees, there’s only one way out of the room, and they didn’t have anywhere to go without risking personal injury. Faced with only one other option, the employees decided to subdue and disarm the customer.
Sounds like a great case of heroism to me, wouldn’t you agree?
Apparently, Walmart has a corporate policy that prohibits their employees to defend themselves — more specifically, they must flee (even if they are unable to do so) rather than confront a customer.
Walmart has now fired four employees tied to this incident.
Why were they fired? Violation of Walmart policy AP09.
If… the suspect has a weapon or brandishes or threatens use of a weapon; all associates must disengage from the situation, withdraw to a safe position, and contact law enforcement.
Walmart spokesman Dan Fogleman reponded with the following:
“We appreciate the intentions demonstrated by our associates in this situation, but the actions taken put their safety – and potentially the safety of our customers and other associates – in jeopardy. In their roles within the store, they were aware of our expectations regarding safety and, unfortunately, their actions have led to them no longer working for the company.” (source)
Walmart’s actions have led me to no longer do business with them.
I don’t spend my money in places that prevent the general public from being able to defend themselves while on their property, I think I’ll include Walmart in this as well.
Now you have a choice:
- Stop shopping at Walmart
- Support a company that fires its employees for defending themselves
If you choose to stop shopping at Walmart, please print the following, and deliver it to the manager of your nearest Walmart store.
Over the years I have spent thousands of dollars at Walmart stores. After the manner in which Walmart handled a situation in their Layton, Utah store, that’s about to change.
This particular issue arises from various Walmart policies which essentially force employees to become victims at the hands of would-be criminals. In Layton, four employees disarmed a wanted felon — in defense of their own lives — because they couldn’t “disengage” without someone being killed or seriously wounded. Walmart’s response? Rather than issue a commendation of heroism — they were fired.
A Walmart spokesperson responded with the statement that “their actions have led to them no longer working for the company”.
To that I reply, Walmart’s actions have led me to no longer spend my money in your stores.
If you wish to regain me as a customer, the following must be met:
- Walmart must enact a new policy that provides self-defense overrides any other policy, stating that if an employee acted in self-defense with reasonable force, no disciplinary action shall be taken for such actions.
- Walmart must recognize, via a formal commendation, the actions taken by the four former-employees from the Layton, Utah store.
- Walmart must make resonable accommodation to the same, including, but not limited to reimbursement for lost wages caused by the folly of this policy.
- Notice of the above must be provided to me in writing at the address noted below.
More information can be found at http://bit.ly/fired-for-self-defense
Tell the manager, put simply, neither you, your family, nor your friends patronize companies that fire their employees for defending themselves.
Let me know what response you get in the comments below.