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Moms Demand Action Releases New Ad to Highlight How Kroger’s Lack of Action to Prohibit Open Carry Endangers Employees

New Ad Highlights the Safety Risk Kroger Employees Face Due to the Grocer Allowing the Open Carry of Loaded Firearms

‘World’s Longest Receipt’ Racks Up More Than $300,000 Spent at Kroger Competitors in Just One Week; #GroceriesNotGuns

NEW YORK – Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America today released a new digital ad entitled “Which is Which?” (available here) that showcases how Kroger’s policy allowing the open carry of loaded firearms in stores forces employees to determine whether someone carrying a rifle is dangerous or not. Through a digital ad buy targeted at employees of Kroger and Kroger brand affiliates, the ad – produced by the Toronto office of GREY Advertising – will reach personnel at all levels of the company, from cashiers to the C-suite in Cincinnati.

“Our new ad very clearly outlines the danger faced by Kroger employees given management’s current policy permitting the open carry of loaded firearms, ” said Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. “The ad’s tagline sums it up: ‘One man is here to open carry, the other to open fire, how does she know which is which?’ This is really an issue of workplace safety – businesses have an obligation to protect their employees and Kroger is currently failing when it comes to their firearms policy.”

The laws in a majority of states allow the open carry of loaded rifles in public with absolutely no training, permitting, or minimum age requirement. Combined with the millions of gun sales in America that occur without a background check in a single year, this means that people in most states can legally carry loaded rifles in public without ever having passed a criminal background check.

Last week, as part of an ongoing campaign to call on Kroger Family of Stores President and Chief Operating Officer Michael Ellis and W. Rodney McMullen to prohibit open carry in their supermarkets, Moms Demand Action released the “World’s Longest Receipt”, an ongoing tally of dollars spent at Kroger competitors with gun sense policies. Moms are asking customers to enter the amount spent at stores that put the safety of our families first — stores like Whole Foods, Costco, Target, and most recently, Safeway and Albertsons. As receipts are entered, the site displays an ongoing tally of the total dollars spent at competitors. In just the first week, more than $300,000 was spent at Kroger competitors.

“We launched the World’s Longest Receipt site to keep track of the money Kroger is losing by neglecting customer and employee safety – and the numbers don’t lie. In just one week, more than a quarter of a million dollars was rerouted from Kroger to its competitors with gun sense policies,” said Watts. “Kroger’s refusal to act is not only putting their employees and customers at risk, but its also costing them profits as moms take our grocery shopping to competitors with gun sense. How long will it take for Kroger to realize that moms and women – Kroger’s largest customer segment – mean business?”

Also last week, to highlight Kroger’s failure to update its firearm policy, Moms Demand Action released a 60-second digital ad featuring individuals open carrying firearms in the aisles of a supermarket, behavior that is permitted by Kroger policies, in contrast to people carrying other objects that are prohibited from most Kroger stores, including skateboards, animals, and squirt guns. Coinciding with the ad release, Moms applauded Safeway and Albertsons, which merged earlier this year, for responding to Moms Demand Action’s calls by clarifying their company-wide policy prohibiting firearms in their stores.

Moms Demand Action’s petition calling on Kroger to prohibit open carry in its supermarkets was launched in response to incidences of gun violence in and around stores, as well as open carry demonstrations organized by gun extremists who brought loaded semi-automatic assault weapons into stores (photos here). The petition has garnered over 360,000 signatures.

Moms Demand Action’s Kroger campaign follows similar efforts aimed at Target, Starbucks, Chipotle, Sonic, Chili’s and Jack in the Box that led these companies to take swift action to stand with Moms and enforce or adopt policies that prohibit open carry to protect the safety of their employees and customers.