On Friday, America’s largest retailer, Walmart, reversed their decision to remove guns and ammunition from store displays as a precaution to concerns over “isolated civil unrest.”
On Thursday, Walmart spokesperson Kory Lundberg shared details of the decision in an email to NBC News. The superstore chain requested that all of its stores remove their guns and ammunition from their racks. They asked management to transfer the items to a more secure backroom area of each store out of “an abundance of caution.”
However, Lundberg said on Friday that Walmart changed their mind and asked stores to return the items to their displays.
“As the current incidents have remained geographically isolated, we have made the decision to begin returning these products to the sales floor today,” he explained.
Walmart and Other Stores Preparing for Social Unrest
The reversal comes only four days prior to the 2020 presidential election. Some are concerned of civil unrest following the election’s results. In fact, President Donald Trump previously suggested that he may contest the election if candidate Joe Biden wins.
Many storefront businesses are fearful of chaos following the election’s results. Especially after months of contentious protests for racial equality and against police brutality. In addition, anti-lockdown protestors armed with assault rifles demonstrated in Michigan and Minnesota leading to clashes between opposing groups. Stores across the nation have started to board up their windows and hire security to prevent property damages.
“Many have (and will be) boarding up locations or relying on other safety precautions — normally methods that are reserved for severe weather incidents,” said the CEO of facilities software company ServiceChannel Tom Buiocchi. “But now also for the social unrest throughout the summer of 2020 and in preparation for the upcoming national election.”
ServiceChannel has seen a huge uptick in their orders since this summer. The company has completed around 310 work orders for the preventative boarding up of businesses. And that is within just the last couple of weeks of October alone. During the months of May through July, ServiceChannel earned $20.4 million for work orders in relation to recent civil unrest.