Readers Respond: Safety in the store

An article about dangerous home improvement activities generated this letter about unattended children inside stores.

"One of the biggest issues I find with customer safety are customers who do not mind their children. Kids think hardware and home improvement stores are playgrounds, and parents think the store is the babysitter. As a responsible retailer, it is your job to educate the parents on the dangers of not supervising their own children. Your staff cannot be the babysitter, the nanny or the entertainer. Your employees have difficult jobs, selling to customers and the never-ending task lists that must be completed to maintain your business, which is hard enough without having to keep saying, 'Johnny, don't climb up on that' or 'Suzie don't crawl in there' every five minutes. My approach is simple and direct. I tell the parents that I am not the babysitter and that it is their responsibility to mind their kids.

I even had customers leave their children in my store and go to another store, expecting my staff to watch them. This is an accident waiting to happen."
— Rocco Arena