retail news in context, analysis with attitude

The El Paso Times reports that two people who were seriously wounded in the mass shooting at an El Paso Walmart last month are now suing the retailer, “claiming that store failed to have proper security in place to prevent the tragedy.”

Jessica and Guillermo Garcia were shopping at the store with their children on August 3 when the shooter - often described as a white nationalist and domestic terrorist - opened fire, killing 22 and wounding 25.

According to the story, “The lawsuit does not state if the family is seeking monetary compensation from the store.”
KC's View:
Without passing judgement on the lawsuit, it does raise several questions.

To what extent are customers - and employees - concerned about their safety when they go to Walmart stores around the country? To what extent are people worried anytime they go to a big retailer or public place?

(A small point here. I was teaching at Portland State this summer, and I asked my class - many of the students were minorities - how many of them felt generally less safe in the wake of the El Paso shootings. More than half of their hands went up. I don’t blame them.)

The other question is the degree to which every retailer needs to be thinking about heightening security in their stores. I think they need to. A lot.

One of the things that the litigants’ lawyer says is that the initial intention is to obtain information on Walmart’s security procedures:

“We are also requesting information about Wal-Mart’s security practices, including how the El Paso store was rated on Wal-Mart’s highly secretive risk-scoring and crime-database systems,” he said. “We also want to know whether El Paso Wal-Mart managers altered store security policies in response to a hostage situation and shooting that took place in 2016 at a Wal-Mart in Amarillo, Texas.”

Notice served, I think.