- Some of the largest retailers in America, including Walmart and Dick’s Sporting Goods, are changing their gun sales policies.
- A debate over gun control has swept the US following the Parkland, Florida shooting that killed 17 people.
- Gun-control activists are threatening to boycott companies that continue to sell assault-style rifles and don’t raise the minimum age to buy guns to 21.
Corporate America is leading the charge for gun-control reform.
Following the shooting that killed 17 people in Parkland, Florida, the nation has been engulfed in a debate over gun control. This week, some of the largest retailers in America have announced changes to their firearm sales policies.
Now, gun-control activists are calling for changes across the industry. Anti-Trump campaign Grab Your Wallet is boycotting retailers that refuse to stop selling assault-style rifles and raise the minimum age to buy guns to 21.
Here are all the retailers that have changed their policies on gun sales following the Parkland, Florida shooting:
Dick’s Sporting Goods
Dick’s kicked off the trend on Wednesday with an announcement that it would stop selling assault-style weapons and require gun buyers to be at least 21 years old.
The sporting-goods chain sold a gun to Nikolas Cruz, the 19-year-old accused of killing 17 people at a high school in Parkland, Florida, on February 14, though a different gun was used in the shooting.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with all of the victims and their loved ones,” the company wrote in a letter to customers.
“But thoughts and prayers are not enough,” the letter continued. “We have to help solve the problem that’s in front of us. Gun violence is an epidemic that’s taking the lives of too many people, including the brightest hope for the future of America – our kids.”
The company additionally said it would stop selling items “resembling assault-style rifles, including nonlethal airsoft guns and toys” on its website.
“Our heritage as a company has always been in serving sportsmen and hunters, and we will continue to do so in a responsible way,” Walmart said in a statement.
Kroger announced on Thursday that it is raising its minimum age for gun sales from 18 to 21.
Kroger sells firearms in 43 Fred Meyer stores in Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, and Washington.
Fred Meyer stores will also stop selling assault-style rifles in all locations. Previously, the chain only sold the controversial type of gun in Alaska, having previously stopped sales in other states “several years ago,” according to the company.
“Recent events demonstrate the need for additional action on the part of responsible gun retailers,” Kroger said in a statement, calling the changes “common sense steps we can take immediately.”
On Thursday,L. L. Bean announced it had “reviewed our policy on firearm sales, and we will no longer be selling guns or ammunition to anyone under the age of 21.”
L. L. Bean’s flagship store in Freeport, Maine, was the only store with a licence to sell firearms, according to CNN.
On Thursday, REI announced it would place a hold on brands including Giro, Bell, and CamelBak as their parent company, Vista Outdoor, stays silent about plans for its firearms brand, Savage Arms. Savage Arms currently sells “modern sporting rifles.”
“We believe that it is the job of companies that manufacture and sell guns and ammunition to work towards common sense solutions that prevent the type of violence that happened in Florida last month,” REI said in a statement. “In the last few days, we’ve seen such action from companies like Dick’s Sporting Goods and Walmart and we applaud their leadership.”
REI itself does not sell guns, but the pressure it is putting on partners demonstrates the trend sweeping the industry.