I learned yesterday that our neighborhood Martins (at Portage and Elwood) is, as we speak, making physical changes to the front inside of their store to accommodate a sub-station for the Rent-a-Center. Many of us are appalled and feel it is time to let our feelings be known. These types of stores along with check cashing fronts are the scourge and shame of the inner-city!
People who run these kinds of operations are out to make a huge profit from the folks who already are having a tough time living day-to-day. They do not need to be taken advantage of. Customers are romanced into thinking that they too can own a brand new refrigerator for just a mere $25/week. They do not realize the $25/week needs to be multiplied by 4.33 weeks every month. They very soon fall behind on their payments and a couple of huge burly guys drive up in a big truck and are at their door to remove the dream along with all of the dollars invested! I have personally witnessed this three times with my neighbors to the north of me. One time the neighbors were rousted out of their bed in the early AM, only to have that bed removed while it was still warm!
If you have strong feelings on this subject, please voice them on the Martin's web site where there is an average space to write. Last nite I sent off an email and this AM a fellow by the name of Tom called me and wanted to hear more. I was kind, but very verbal! I also informed him that there are numbers of very active people in our neighborhood who care about these types of decisions and that they need to be prepared for lots of dialogue!
In the past I have found Martins to be most responsive to the needs and plight of many of our neighbors. Annually, when I was directing the Center, they would partner with us to give generous food baskets at holiday time. At other times, when a neighbor had a pressing need they were more than helpful. I have to believe that someone in the corporate office was sold a bill of goods and maybe didn't have his thinking cap on when this decision was made. It seems out of character with the Martins I have known. We, who are thinking and caring people, need to take action.
Many thanks............-Susan Adamek, retired activist who is once again taking up a cause for the People!
I echo Susan's thoughts and would add this. These are good people making a mistake in judgment. This particular store has a tough time making any sort of profit, but this strategy isn't the way to address that challenge. We who shop at other Martin's Supermarkets should voice our displeasure to management at those stores as well.
I know many of the people in management, and they are well meaning, thoughtful folks. They will listen to us.