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Kroger Joins Walmart In Discouraging Open Carrying Of Guns In Stores

In the wake of the West-Texas shooting spree that took place near Odessa last weekend, grocery and pharmacy giant Kroger has decided to follow in the footsteps of Walmart and openly discourage the open carrying of firearms in their stores in states with legal open carry laws.

Jessica Adelman, group vice president of corporate affairs for Kroger, released an email statement earlier this week that not only strongly discouraged the carrying of firearms in Kroger marketplaces, but also called upon elected officials to enact change in the wake of gun violence.

Seven people were killed in the West-Texas shooting last weekend.

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Since the shooting, a number of American companies have come forward to give their two cents on firearm/ammunition sales and state laws that allow customers to openly carry guns in their stores.

Walmart is 'strongly discouraging' the open carrying of firearms in their stores.

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This does not mean, however, that they will stop the sales of guns and ammunition.

"Walmart will continue to serve the needs of "responsible hunters, sportsmen and women," stated Walmart CEO Doug Mcmillon, "My family raised bird dogs when I was growing up in Jonesboro, Arkansas, and I'm a gun owner myself."

However, Kroger stores got out of the firearm sales business over a year ago.

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"A year ago, Kroger made the conscious decision to completely exit the firearm and ammunition business when we stopped selling them in our Fred Meyer stores in the Pacific Northwest,” stated Jessica Adelman, group vice president of corporate affairs for Kroger.

"Kroger has demonstrated with our actions that we recognize the growing chorus of Americans who are no longer comfortable with the status quo and who are advocating for concrete and common sense gun reforms."

Yesterday, Kroger also announced that they would be following Walmart in discouraging the open carrying of firearms in their stores.

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"Kroger is respectfully asking that customers no longer openly carry firearms into our stores, other than authorized law enforcement officers," Adelman continued.

The company is also calling upon state officials to re-examine gun laws.

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"We are joining those encouraging our elected leaders to pass laws that will strengthen background checks and remove weapons from those who have been found to pose a risk for violence," the statement continued.

It is important to note, however, that this is not a complete ban of firearms within Kroger stores.

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The company is "strongly discouraging" openly carrying guns, but there are no policies being put in place that would have openly carrying customers removed from the store, or even facing any type of consequences whatsoever.

h/t: CNBC, Daily Beast