Anti-shoplifting measures that have been implemented in some states have led to lots of waiting for shoppers.
Inside Edition detailed the situation in a new report.
For the report, the investigative outlet visited five Walmart, five CVS, and five Target stores at which anti-shoplifting measures have been implemented. The stores are all located in New York and New Jersey.
In case you are unfamiliar with the situation, retail theft has been on the rise in recent years, particularly in big cities, such as New York. For example, Breitbart News reports, "In 2021, retailers lost a combined $94.5 billion from theft and inventory loss, according to the 2022 National Retail Security Survey."
The trend continues to the present day. Target, for example, is predicting that, this year, it will lose upwards of $1 billion as a result of "theft and organized crime."
As a result of this rise in retail, many of the bigger retail outlets have simply shut down vulnerable stores in areas of the country. That same National Retail Security Survey mentioned above, for example, found that, in 2021, 35 retail outlets closed down stores in California and 23 closed down stores in New York.
Many of the retail stores that have not shut down have turned to anti-shoplifting measures, including locking down many items behind glass windows. This is what Inside Edition focused on in its report, namely, what shopping is like when the items that you desire are all locked up.
While visiting the stores mentioned at the outset, Inside Edition journalist Lisa Guerrero noted just how many items have been put behind glass.
"Everything's locked up," she said, while highlighting the locking up of toothpaste and underwear.
The investigative outlet found that, as a result of these anti-shoplifting measures, some shoppers had to wait for as long as 40 minutes to get their goods.
At a Walmart located in New Jersey, for example, Inside Edition found that it took 24 minutes just to get an electric toothbrush, and it took 40 minutes to simply purchase three items.
Inside Edition provided many more examples of this nature in its report. Most of the waiting seems to be for store attendants to open the cases to get the desired items.
It does not appear as though retail theft is slowing down. So, these anti-shoplifting measures are expected to continue, along with the long waits that they have caused.
As for why retail theft is so out of control, the New York Post reports:
Experts have blamed rising cases of rampant theft on lax policies — including the passage of Prop 47 in California, which reduced theft from a potential felony to a misdemeanor — as well as calls to defund the police in 2020 following the murder of George Floyd, which resulted in a mass exodus of cops nationwide.