Walmart to continue selling guns despite two mass shootings in 4 days

07 Août, 2019, 00:47 | Auteur: Auguste Feret
  • Retail giant Walmart has no plans to stop selling guns and ammunition despite two recent shootings at its stores

Walmart Inc. has no plans to stop selling guns or ammunition, or change any other retail or security practice following the August 3 shooting that killed at least 20 and wounded 26 shoppers at an El Paso, Texas store, a spokesman for the company said Sunday.

"I feel confident in saying that it did (help) in Southaven", said Walmart spokesman Randy Hargrove in a phone interview, adding that employees guided other associates and customers to the right exits and out of danger.

Additionally, 'Walmart goes beyond federal law requiring all customers to pass a background check before purchasing any firearm, ' said Hargrove.

At least 20 people were killed while 24 others suffered injuries on Saturday after a man opened fire at its stores in Texas on Saturday, days after a displeased employee killed shot dead two colleagues and a police officer in its store in Mississippi.

Years of public pressure led Walmart, the largest U.S arms retailer, to end assault rifle sales in 2015 and in 2018 to raise the minimum age for gun purchases to 21.

Walmart is facing pressure to stop selling firearms following several shootings in the past week - two of which happened at Walmart stores.

"The entire Walmart community is heartbroken", chief executive Doug McMillon wrote on Instagram in response to the shootings.

Igor Volsky, founder of the group Guns Down America, told MSNBC that Walmart could change the gun control debate if it stopped selling guns and offered buybacks, according to USA Today.

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Walmart, which has been selling guns for decades, has gradually tightened its gun policies in recent years.

Now advocacy groups and workers say Walmart should do more to curb gun violence.

Walmart again changed its gun policies in 2018 shortly after the Parkland, Florida, school shooting in February 2018 that killed 17 students and staff members.

When the company tweeted it was "in shock" after the tragedy in El Paso, many Twitter users replied: 'Stop selling guns'.

"A lot of us are on edge", the 48-year-old said.

That same month, in a call to discuss earnings, the company's chief executive, Ed Stack, said lower sales during the quarter were partly driven by lower demand for "anything associated with hunting", including guns, ammunition, firearm accessories and hunting apparel.

Walmart took a strong stance on firearms in 2015, banning assault rifles.

The retailer has yet to respond to a BBC request for comment.

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