Starting this school year, CVS Pharmacy at Town and Country is implementing a new lunch policy, which limits the number of students and community members allowed in the store to five at a time. According to CVS, this rule is an effort to reduce the number of thefts and vandalism by students during lunch.
“The reason is because when there are too many students, there is no control,” employee Ellen, who declined to give her last name, said. “The students come in here and destroy the store. We used to make the students put their backpacks in the front, but we stopped that because we don’t want to be responsible for their bags if anything happens to them.”
However, many are not impressed with this new system, including Palo Alto community member Kristine De Lorimier Dworkin, who expressed her concern to students waiting in line at lunch to enter the CVS due to the new policy.
“I turned to the approximately 20 high school kids outside the CVS door and said, ‘Kids, you are out here because these folks have decided you have criminal tendencies,’” Dworkin said. “‘They think you will steal from them. Don’t give them your money. Instead spend it in places where your business is appreciated.’ All of them decided I had a point and they left.”
Dworkin said the new policy is inconsiderate given the amount of time Paly students have for lunch.
“Given how many kids were there and how little time there is for lunch break, it was going to take forever for everyone to get into CVS,” Dworkin said. “I understand that the shopping center is busy at lunch time, and it isn’t possible to watch everyone, but to treat everyone as they’re criminals is wrong.”
Dworkin even went to Facebook to share her experience, where she got overwhelming support from the community. Other residents also shared their displeasure with the new CVS policy as well.
“We have an Ace Hardware here that handles it a little differently,” Palo Alto residents Jeff Phillips said on the message board. “They actually cater to the kids needs with a lunch counter and carry stuff that kids want. However, they do make the kids check their backpacks at the door.”
Dworkin said it’s important for customers to know a business before spending money there.
“I want the kids at Paly to know that as a consumer, you should spend your money where your business it appreciated,” Dworkin said. “Respect is a two-way street. If you’re being respectful, you should expect that in return. I don’t think CVS appreciates the high school business they get. If so, they wouldn’t treat all students like thieves.”