Thursday, June 7, 2012
A new Dunkin' Donuts just opened within biking distance from my house. During their grand opening the coffee is free. They have opened in an area that desperately needs people to believe in retail. The shopping center is surrounded by subsidized and "affordable" housing, which sadly means that it is really tough for businesses to make a go of it there.
During my stint with the cute, young cop on Sunday (see the story HERE), we talked about this shopping center. The anchor stores are Safeway and a Rite-Aid Pharmacy. He said the Safeway loses in excess of $100,000 annually due to theft. The Rite-Aid used to be about the same, but they've put in more security measures which has helped. He said that after 10pm, the Safeway only has a few workers on shift and people will come in, grab a case of beer, and walk out of the store -- knowing that no one will/can stop them. That time frame is prime time for police to be in lots of locations, so they can't always be there to deal with it. So Safeway figures in the loss, charges us, the HONEST PEOPLE, more money, and accepts it as a cost of doing business. They're a big company, so they can take those hits, but a small business can't. If Safeway leaves, the housing around there will experience a "food desert" and it will be THEIR OWN FAULT!
What kind of mentality does it take for people to think this kind of behavior is acceptable? It's a mixed area -- new immigrants (mostly Spanish speaking) and African-American, with a few of the other categories mixed in. For many, they are third generation living in this same block of housing. Somewhere along the way these people have decided their "right" to indulge in what they want trumps honesty and integrity.
There are a couple of other businesses like a Buffalo Wings Factory (Thursday night all you can eat -- the local athletes LOVE it), a Curves franchise, a laundromat, Burger King, Dairy Queen, an Indian restaurant and a pizza place. There used to be a Dollar Store but the theft drove them out of business. You'll notice that all of the businesses listed are service oriented -- no goods sitting out to be stolen.
At any rate, I admire the Dunkin Donuts for even opening a new business in this economy! When I stopped by I had just finished 10 miles on the bike but EVEN SO, I passed up a donut and had their chicken salad on croissant instead. It was incredibly good!