Originally posted on December 8, 2021.
One shopper at a Safeway grocery store near San Fran’s Castro District was overheard muttering, “This Safeway is getting weirder and weirder,” as he walked through newly installed security gates at the entrance of the grocery store, reports James Freeman in the WSJ.
From the San Francisco Chronicle:
The automatic gates, added to the Safeway at 2020 Market St., let customers easily enter the store but swing quickly shut behind them, preventing would-be thieves from dashing out with shopping carts full of stolen items.
The supermarket also has added barriers around its self-checkout area, funneling customers through only one exit. Checkout aisles that aren’t staffed are blocked with large physical barriers rather than just a cord, and the entire side entrance to the store has been closed and blocked off by a large display of plastic water bottles.
Deterring Local Shoplifters
Safeway executives said that the new security measures were a response to what it claims is increased shoplifting at the locale.
Betty Yu of San Francisco’s CBS station KPIX reports on the reaction from shoppers:
“Honestly, I think it’s probably good that they did that… there was a really bad shoplifting problem almost every single time I came here, there was some type of ruckus happening,” offered Chris Mejia.
According to Mr. Freeman, until late October, the neighborhood Safeway was once open 24 hours. It began closing at 9 pm “due to rampant theft.”
“Lots of times there was people [sic] running and security following or trying to stop them,” added Mejia.
Officers Weapons Make Employees Uncomfortable
Restaurant owners of a spot located in San Fran’s North Beach neighborhood, “apologized Sunday for asking police officers to leave their eatery because the officers’ guns made employees uncomfortable.”
Three officers were asked to leave the brunch spot on Friday, explains Mr. Freeman. on its Instagram channel, the restaurant posted an explanation Saturday that read: “The restaurant is a safe space.”
The presence of the officers’ weapons in the restaurant made us feel uncomfortable. We respect the San Francisco Police Department and are grateful for the work they do. We welcome them into the restaurant when they are off duty, out of uniform and without their weapons.”
Owners Rachel Sillcocks and Kristina Liedags Compton defended their actions: “These are stressful times and we handled this badly.”
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