Furious after grocery store trip

Posted on: Sat, 09/06/2003 - 5:52am
cathlina's picture
Joined: 06/29/2001 - 09:00

I went to the store today to do my weekly shopping.

The only way to get into the store is to walk past the produce dept.

I noticed that the peanuts in the shell weren't in the usual place...since I avoid them.

So, I asked two teenagers in the produce dept. where they were.

They were back by the aisle I had just walked through. Of course, I didn't see them.

They mockingly pointed to where they were and I politely told them I just wanted to know where they were since I was allergic to peanuts. I also mentioned that breathing peanut allergens could cause a reaction.

They started laughing at me and saying "Oh..yeah right".

I told them it was the truth and showed them my Medic Alert bracelet.

They laughed all the harder and then started pointing out where everything was in the dept...."there's the peanuts...there's the head lettuce...there's the carrots..." They treated as if I was crazy.

By that time, I was mad and told them that peanut allergy could kill me.

They laughed harder. I walked away. When I came around through the next aisle, they could see me from the produce dept. and started laughing, smirking and staring at me.

That did it. I got the assistant manager and ranted about their attitude, the comments they made, the ridicule etc. etc.

I made it clear I was not coming in the store and being riduculed about my peanut allergy again.

I am so steamed now...

Posted on: Sat, 09/06/2003 - 7:14am
anonymous's picture
Joined: 05/28/2009 - 16:42

Sorry about your encounter. It is obviously just pure ignorance! I am bothered by the fact that Peanuts are left out open like that as well. I shop at Schnuck's & have thought about saying something to them. They are right there in the reach of any child that might want to grab one. Again, sorry to hear about the ignorance displayed by the workers. Don't let them get you down.

Posted on: Sat, 09/06/2003 - 7:23am
e-mom's picture
Joined: 04/23/2000 - 09:00

I'm sorry that these teenagers did not understand the seriousness of PA.
Most teenagers do not understand death and think that they are invincible. AND most teenagers are rude, as well!!

Posted on: Sat, 09/06/2003 - 7:59am
KarenH's picture
Joined: 09/21/2002 - 09:00

I would go even higher then the assistant manager, say the head office or the head manager. In fact, I would put it in writing so that it would go on those kids records.
Regardless of how old they were, they are employees of a company and should NEVER treat a customer that way. They should be fired. If they make fun of you, how about a disabled or elderly shopper?
Just a point-not all teens are rude. I shopped regularily at Overwaitea in my town and the staff, teens included were ALWAYS courteous, kind, and would NEVER have pulled that sort of stunt. I am one of those kinds of customers who expects nothing less then excellent service. I make sure to praise awesome service, and I'm totally understanding when it's busy/etc and the staff are obviously doing their best. But if people treat me like THAT, I refuse to take it.

Posted on: Sat, 09/06/2003 - 9:35am
cathlina's picture
Joined: 06/29/2001 - 09:00

I called and talked to the store manager and he has talked to the kids, too. He said what they did was stupid and immature.
My daughter (18) said she would have been fired at her job for doing something like that.
I warned the store manager if these kids pulled this once, they will do it again to someone else.
I worked in a high school for two years and supervised in school suspension kids for two years. Usually, kids with an attitude were put in suspension over and over. They think it is fun to make trouble.
Most kids at the high school were great, though!

Posted on: Sat, 09/06/2003 - 10:07am
becca's picture
Joined: 05/22/2001 - 09:00

I cannot imagine them getting away with that. Period. They should lose their jobs. Making fun of a customer so blatantly is *really bad business*.
They should offer you something to win you back. I recently sent off an email after a very minor thing, compared with your incident, involving a coupon not being honored. I emailed to ask if it were the policy(politely) and got a $25 grocery card immediately sent! It arrived in the mail the following day. Just a little thing.
You deserve a major apology and gesture to win back your patronage, IMO. That is inexcusable. becca

Posted on: Sat, 09/06/2003 - 10:21am
nancy023's picture
Joined: 12/12/2002 - 09:00

Brats! I would complain to the district manager. Do they have a website? Perhaps you could send an e-mail and describe peanut allergy as covered under the ADA. When I complained to our supermarket manager one time, I made sure he knew that I spend $xxx per month at his store. That got prompt attention.

Posted on: Sat, 09/06/2003 - 10:43am
SF's picture
Joined: 06/06/2002 - 09:00

Sorry to hear of your bad experience and hope that you feel some closure by speaking with someone of authority! What those kids did is not acceptable and they need to learn a lesson from this incident so that they realize it could be them or someone they care about who is ridiculed, or who has a life threatening food allergy!
I had an experience the other day when I went to have copies made of the posters that Valerie has on her site: "This is a nut free classroom;" "No food past this point!" etc etc I was making copies and having them laminated so that I could give to our school to hang in the classroom and outside the door (which they did already and they look terrific....people are noticing them!) Anyway, the young woman working at the copy dept of Office Depot returned the finished work to me and asked with a SMILE and a GIGGLE "what are these, what does this mean???? When I gave a brief explaination she did not seem genuinely concerned and still chuckled and smiled....I am not sure how to take this other than to think she is just ignorant and uneducated about PA....Lets remember there are still people out there that have NEVER heard about peanut allergy.... and then again there are just as many who really do care about PA!!! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]
Stay Strong and Stay Safe! [img]http://uumor.pair.com/nutalle2/peanutallergy/smile.gif[/img]

Posted on: Sat, 09/06/2003 - 10:57am
darthcleo's picture
Joined: 11/08/2000 - 09:00

You must admit that "this is a nut free classroom" can sound funny... ;-)

Posted on: Sat, 09/06/2003 - 10:59am
SpudBerry's picture
Joined: 07/23/2002 - 09:00

Cathlina - which grocery store was this? Even though you spoke to the manager, I would still follow up with a letter. If it is a chain, I would send the letter to the top people at the top of the conglomerate.
Nancy is right, this is an ADA issue - and if you felt like it you could sue the pants off these people. I wouldn't threaten a suit in the letter, but I would certainly remind them that PA does qualify for ADA regulations.
I worked in the grocery business for many years - mostly as a computer programmer, but I worked several years in the stores, and that behavior warrants dismissal.
Mom to 3 year old twins Ben & Mike - one PA & the other not.
Stay Informed And Peanut Free!

Posted on: Sat, 09/06/2003 - 12:12pm
dmbb's picture
Joined: 10/12/2002 - 09:00

Have you considered writing corporate headquarters and copying the FDA, FAAN, or the Food Allergy Initiative? This could be a larger problem throughout the entire company. It's possible you could end up helping others with PA by getting info to the right people.


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