According to news sources, pharmacy giant Walgreens recently adopted a company-wide policy similar to Target’s letting men enter women’s restrooms — and vice versa — in its more than 8,000 stores.
The policy reportedly was implemented after one customer in California complained about being barred from entering the women’s restroom.
Apparently Walgreens hasn’t learned from Target’s mistake.
Since rolling out its bathroom policies nearly 2 years ago, more than 1.5 million people have signed the American Family Association’s pledge not to shop at Target, and the retailer’s stock price has tumbled from nearly $83 per share in 2016 to $73-$74 per share as of this morning.
In December Target announced plans to close 12 of its larger stores in 2018. According to CNBC, the stores are located in Minnesota, Kansas, Michigan, Georgia, Louisiana, Florida, Illinois, and Texas.
Even Target’s management has acknowledged that letting men enter the women’s restrooms and changing areas at its stores has been bad for business. However, the CEO has stopped short of saying the policy itself is bad.
Policies like these not only are bad for business. They’re bad for customers. Giving men an excuse to loiter in or around women’s restrooms or changing areas puts women and children at risk.
For example, last year a New Jersey man allegedly videotaped women in the changing area of a Target store.
A few months earlier a different man was caught photographing women in a Target store’s changing area as well.
In 2016 a Seattle man entered the women’s locker room at a pool twice — once while a girls’ swim team was present. When confronted, he told staff, “the law has changed, and I have a right to be here.” No action was taken against the man.
These are the sorts of problems that happen when businesses let men enter women’s restrooms. However, that doesn’t seem to be stopping Walgreens from following in Target’s misguided footsteps.
Photo Credite: By Anthony92931 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons.
You may recall in April of last year Target announced on its website that customers and employees at its stores would be able to use the changing areas and restrooms of their choice rather than their biological sex.
Many people expressed public safety concerns about Target’s decision to let men enter women’s restrooms and changing areas.
Target has suffered financially since, with its stock prices falling nearly 23% — from $82.76 per share to $64 per share — since April of last year.
Some argue that stores like Target are simply having a tough time in this economy. However, Target’s competitor Walmart has seen its stock value rise from $69 per share to nearly $98 since April of 2016.
Last month Target announced it will close 12 of its larger stores next year. According to CNBC, the stores are located in Minnesota, Kansas, Michigan, Georgia, Louisiana, Florida, Illinois, and Texas.
Even Target’s management has acknowledged that letting men enter the women’s restrooms and changing areas at its stores has been bad for business. Last spring Target’s CEO admitted, “Target didn’t adequately assess the risk [about publicizing the policy], and the ensuing backlash was self-inflicted.” However, he stopped short of saying the policy itself was bad.
Target has not changed its policy as of today, and over 1.5 million Americans are still boycotting the retail chain as a result, but at least the company admits the boycott is affecting its bottom line.
The Human Rights Campaign — the leading homosexual and transgender organization in America — recently announced it will host a summit meeting at the University of Central Arkansas campus in Conway this November. According to the HRC website, the meeting is geared for middle school and high school students ages 13 – 18.
This is not the first time HRC has been active in Arkansas. In 2014 the group launched a multi-million-dollar, three-year campaign to make Arkansas more open to its political agenda. That same year HRC spent approximately $160,000 supporting Fayetteville’s “nondiscrimination” ordinance.
Below is the announcement HRC released about its upcoming event at UCA.