Tuesday, August 30, 2022

On Sunday evening, in a Safeway Market near my home, a twenty-year-old male became an active shooter, Using an AK15 Rifle, he murdered a shopper and a store worker before killing himself. For everybody it was awful. For we who are employed by grocers, it was devastating.

I was disturbed upon learning what happened. That night I couldn’t sleep. On Monday morning I was considering quitting my job in a large, busy supermarket. Its many cash registers typically have lines of customers waiting to be checked out and eager to get going.

I’m a checker who handles those lines. My work is physical, fast, and labor intensive. It’s also mental, requiring alertness to codes, quantities, and prices. A checker also handles money accurately.

Checkers staying busy and focused can’t also keep an eye on what’s happening in the store’s larger areas. Retail store spaces are designed to maximize displays and minimize theft. There are few, if any, hiding places. I often wonder how to protect myself if an active shooter suddenly appears; there are no good answers. That’s been so in the various retail settings I’ve worked in throughout my almost twenty years in Central Oregon.

Yesterday, I went to work, finding some co-workers more distraught than myself. Especially those who had found and read the Safeway Shooter’s online diary. It was full of hatred, anger, self-pity, and his plans to shoot-up a nearby high school on August 8; but unable to wait, he hit Safeway.

Until grocery leadership finds how to ensure safety from random shooters, their employees are sitting ducks to high-powered weapons.

Today, I will go to work, still thinking about the pros and cons of risky exposure. Until Saturday night, mass shootings happened elsewhere. Now, that’s not so, and sadly, grocery stores equally are vulnerable as schools.

Dear Friends: America must control weapons selling, fabricating, and ownership. Diana

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