Walmart said it seeks to help employees and families of the shooting victims from the recent incident that occurred in Store #1841 in Chesapeake, Va. Walmart is supporting the families with funeral, travel and other expenses, according to Walmart U.S. CEO John Furner.
The shooting in the Walmart store’s break room took the lives of six employees and injured four others, with two remaining in the hospital, Furner noted.
Walmart also has set up a physical site where employees “can meet, connect and speak to counselors.” All employees and their families also have access to confidential mental health support resources at no cost.
Attorneys for one of the shooting victims, who have sued Walmart on behalf of the family, have said Walmart should have taken action before the event. The lawsuit claims Walmart was aware of the issues with store shooter Andre Bing and knew the supervisor had previously been written up for behavioral concerns, including bullying and had a propensity for violence. Donya Prioleau, an employee in the store, filed suit against Walmart in a Chesapeake Circuit Court on Nov. 29, claiming previous complaints against Bing were shrugged off because management “liked him.”
“As workplace shootings and violence become horrifyingly common, employers have a responsibility to understand the warning signs and take threats seriously in order to protect their employees and customers,” attorneys John Morgan and Peter Anderson said in a statement. “Our hearts are broken for the families of those who lost loved ones and for those, like Ms. Prioleau, whose lives will never be the same because of this trauma. We will work to hold Walmart accountable for failing to stop this tragedy.”
The Walmart Foundation will contribute $1 million to the United Way of South Hampton Roads’ Hope & Healing Fund, aimed to support those impacted by the shooting within the community Walmart is providing a 2:1 match for employee donations to this fund as part of its season of giving back campaign.