Following the example of Chipotle and some other large U.S. restaurant and retail chains, Target (NYSE:TGT) is asking customers not to bring firearms into its stores, even in states or towns where it's allowed by law, the company announced Wednesday.
The nationwide department store chain’s policy shift comes after months of protests by gun control advocates, led by Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, the Huffington Post reported. The organization has been able to achieve what might have seemed impossible just a few months ago: persuading major American companies to take a stand against guns.
"Target's decision shows that moms calling for reasonable reforms can move giants," said Erika Soto Lamb, communications director for a coalition of gun reform organizations that include Moms Demand Action.
Interim CEO John Mulligan said, "Bringing firearms to Target creates an environment that is at odds with the family-friendly shopping and work experience we strive to create.”
Target has about 1,700 stores in the U.S. and in 2013 brought in $70 billion in revenue. It is the biggest company yet to ban the open carry of guns in their stores, following Chipotle Mexican Grill (NYSE:CMG), Chili’s, a subsidiary of Brinker International Inc. (NYSE:EAT), and Sonic Corp. (NASDAQ:SONC). Chipotle was the first to announce the move in May, with some people thinking it was a joke at first.
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