NEW YORK — Walmart has ordered workers to remove video game signs and displays that depict violence from stores nationwide after 22 people died in a shooting at one of its Texas stores, but the big box retailer will continue to sell guns.
In an internal memo, the retailer told employees to remove any violent marketing material, unplug Xbox and PlayStation consoles that show violent video games and turn off any violence depicted on screens in its electronics departments.
Employees also were asked to shut off hunting season videos in the sporting goods department where guns are sold. “Remove from the salesfloor or turn off these items immediately,” the memo said.
Walmart still will sell the violent video games and hasn’t made any changes to its gun sales policy, despite pressure from workers, politicians and activists to do so.
“We’ve taken this action out of respect for the incidents of the past week,” Walmart spokeswoman Tara House said in an email. She declined to answer any questions beyond the statement.
Detractors panned the move as an empty gesture aimed a deflecting criticism rather than solving a problem.
“That is a nonanswer and a non-solution,” said Thomas Marshall, who works at Walmart’s e-commerce division in San Bruno, California, and has helped organize a petition to get the company to stop selling guns.
He said they planned to email the petition, which has more than 53,000 signatures, to Walmart CEO Doug McMillon on Friday.