Walmart said Tuesday it will discontinue all sales of short-barrel rifle ammunition that can be used with military style weapons, discontinue sales of handgun ammunition and stop all handgun sales in Alaska, following two “horrific” shootings at Walmart stores this summer.
The biggest retailer in the world is also asking customers at Walmart and Sam’s Club to no longer openly carry firearms in stores, in states where “open carry” is allowed, unless authorized law enforcement officers are present.
It said it won’t be changing its policy for customers who have permits for concealed carry. And it will be adding signage to stores in the coming weeks to communicate the changes.
“We believe the opportunity for someone to misinterpret a situation, even in open carry states, could lead to tragic results,” CEO Doug McMillon said in a memo distributed to employees on Tuesday. “We hope that everyone will understand the circumstances that led to this new policy and will respect the concerns of their fellow shoppers and our associates.”
“We’ve also been listening to a lot of people inside and outside our company as we think about the role we can play in helping to make the country safer,” he added. “It’s clear to us that the status quo is unacceptable.”
McMillon said he will also be sending letters to the White House and other Congressional leaders, asking for action on “common sense measures.” He’s calling on the government to “strengthen background checks and to remove weapons from those who have been determined to pose an imminent danger.”
“Congress and the administration should act,” the CEO said.