Where are the checkers?

BY SUE STATON

Down the Lane

While I was at my homemakers meeting this past month, our conversation turned toward how we missed checkers in the big box stores.

No, we were not talking about the game of checkers. We were talking about the lack of checkout clerks, mostly at the big store that also sells everything from food to garden supplies. I think most of my readers will know exactly which store.

It was evident to me that everyone was fed up with going and buying from this store and having to stand in line for what seems like an eon to get items checked out by a clerk. There maybe 20 or more shopping lanes at this store, and only one lane will be open for you to be checked out. I have been there when the self checkout station was all that was available.

You see they are now expecting you to work for free for them and check out your own items. If you happen to need assistance on an item while scanning, you have to wait while the one lady or man who is available comes to help you. That same person is supposed to be there to watch about six or seven checkout stations. They are to make sure no one misses an item.

I heard today of a precious lady who mistakenly missed a small item at a store in Ashland, and though she tried to pay for the item, the store called the cops and threatened to give her jail time. She mentioned to a friend how embarrassed she was and teared up over the incident. She had used the self checkout, either because there was no other available, or she did not want to wait forever.

My husband was in the garden area of the store today and wanted to purchase items in that department. After waiting at the checkout counter for some time, he was rudely told they no longer check out there.

It is a long walk back to the checkout lanes in the front of the store. After a surgery a few years back, he has a lot of trouble walking. I got to thinking that no older person should be put in this situation at this retail giant, where the parking lots at each of its stores are always packed.

This store only closes one day a year. The money has to be there, especially now since they have the public working for them for free.

Once I asked why they no longer have more checkouts open, and was told they had several employees call in sick. I believe this may be only half true, and if so, it is the manager who needs to see that the store is staffed.

There are help wanted signs all over this town. The government has either made it too easy for people by giving them handouts, or they are just too lazy to work.

I just think people need to speak out more on both of these problems. I am often shocked when I hear how often people call in sick at their jobs. I have gone to work many days when I did not feel well, but I knew I was expected to be there.

I think we need to let this store at the corporate level know we are not happy about the lack of checkers to scan our items. It just may be that someone from the corporate office needs to go undercover at the Winchester store and hear the complaints from the customers!

Whatever needs to be done to make a change, I hope it happens soon! I sure hope more stores do not decide to follow suit. I already have seen it happen at a grocery store also, but not to the same degree.

What are your thoughts on what can be done? Accept the status quo or try to get back to having staffed checkouts?