Walmart will begin returning firearms and ammunition to the sales floor beginning Friday after they were temporarily removed amid social unrest, according to a statement from the retailer.
“After civil unrest earlier this week resulted in damage to several of our stores, consistent with actions we took over the summer, we asked stores to move firearms and ammunition from the sales floor to a secure location in the back of the store in an abundance of caution. As the current incidents have remained geographically isolated, we have made the decision to begin returning these products to the sales floor today,” the company said in an emailed statement.
Walmart (WMT), the world’s largest retailer, removed firearms and ammunition from sales floors this week following protests over the police killing of Walter Wallace Jr.
The retailer made a similar decision to pull firearms and ammunition back in June. While firearms and ammunition were not available on the sales floor, they could still be purchased.
Walmart, which operates more than 4,700 stores in the U.S., sells firearms at approximately half of those locations.
Just over a year ago, Walmart made changes to its gun policy, ending the sale of certain weapons and ammunition following a deadly mass shooting at one of its stores in El Paso, Texas. At the time, the retail giant said it would continue to cater to sportsmen and hunters. Walmart CEO Doug McMillon also “respectfully” requested that shoppers no longer openly carry firearms into the stores, even in states where the law permits them to do, so unless they are authorized law enforcement officers. McMillon also sent letters to Congress calling for “common sense measures” around guns.