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Racism in Walgreens - Aston PA
By -

ASTON, PENNSYLVANIA -- I was visiting relatives in Chester PA and my sister needed formula for my nephew. I headed out for the formula and stopped by Giant supermarket and a nice customer said, "Go to Walgreens. It's probably cheaper." So I went to Walgreens which was probably a mile if not less from Giant supermarket, still in Aston. I went to the aisle of the product, saw the price was better than Giant and took it for purchase, to the cashier. The cashier scanned it and the price was different than what it was listed as. She called a manager, who walked with me to the baby formula aisle.

I showed her the area and she said, "It was incorrect and it's the price of the one above it, you must have moved it?" I quickly told her I did not move anything except when I picked it up to take to the cashier. She wanted to go back and forth about it was moved and I look at her like she was crazy. I said no problem to end her accusations, plus I was pushing for time and walked it up to the cashier and paid for the formula. I walked back to my car and my sister had called for something else and I told her I would have to run back into Walgreens.

As I went through looking for the newly requested item, I heard the manager saying I had switched the tags, I was from Chester and people do that all the time, etc. I came from out of the aisle and let her know I was from Georgia visiting my family and she should not stereotype people because of a city they are from or what they look like. I said people who steal come from any city and any race (Chester has a high crime rate for a city of its size and over 50% A-A). I also reminded her, no tags were switched I picked up the formula from the shelf and the price it was listed in front of.

She put her head down not in shame but as if I was threatening her??? The nerve of her. I walked out the store (because I didn't want her to call the police as a white woman being threatened) and did not purchase the new item. If my nephew did not need the formula, I would have returned that too. I called Walgreens corporate office and gave them the entire story and store location. The initial sign that they were not really into assisting the customer was when the cs representative inquired if I had got her name. I said no. She said you should have got her name.

From that point, the conversation went down sourly. She said a name would be needed. I said location and the fact that she's a manager is not enough to help narrow down her identity to speak with her? I requested her supervisor and re-explained the story. She was much friendlier but I told her I am not benefiting from this because I don't live in the area but the next person she stereotypes, accuses and overhear her conversation may not want to simply speak with her or just walk away. I said I do not have children and had no desire to "scam" for baby formula.

She understood and completed the call complaint for me. Her last statement surprised me but confirmed the racism I knew I had experienced. She said she did offer you the price it was listed on the shelf right? I said no. She seemed shocked but choked back anything she was about to say.

I returned to Georgia and had a few more conversations with Walgreens but nothing came of it. I could have called the EEOC or another organization to handle it, but why bother? The irony of the story is not only had my intuition been correct, I have a career in pharmacy and had previously interned at Walgreens (in Philadelphia). It had been a choice upon completion of my Doctor of Pharmacy. Since I have experienced this injustice, I will never work for Walgreens and have not shopped there since the incident.

I know this is really an issue with the Aston location, but until that area changes its view and treatment on Chester and Chester residents, it will continue to be a small-time, going-nowhere township/borough, with small minded people, who will never ever be on the level of Media, Swarthmore, Wallingford, Garnet Valley, Chadds Ford and other areas of Delaware County that do not place everyone from Chester in the same category.

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Off The Mark!
By -

Good Morning Mark, I appreciate this opportunity to at least feel like I am addressing you personally. One of many things I have enjoyed about my Walgreen€™s career is your uplifting news item€™s, "ON THE MARK"€ you send out monthly. They are filled with wisdom and guidance with a little applied common sense. I am currently an employee with this great company and am writing you because I am concern about the trends I see developing with our company. I have been employed with this company for a few years and have risen to its management level. Here are my observations!

Four way tests: Is it the truth? Is it fair to all concerned? Will it build good will and better friendship? Will it be beneficial to all concerned? No one believes it anymore, store managers don'€™t go by it and supervisors don'€™t enforce it or abide by it either. But it'€™s great p.r.

Case in point. A store manager friend of mine told me he was promised by a supervisor that if he went and cleaned up a store he would be moved to a store he wanted when it opened. He did what was expected, put the store back in the black. When the store he wanted was opened it was given to a young female store manager. It seems favors were exchanged! He requested to move to another store and had to go to his regional v.p. It took more than five occasions and then had to hound them to get it done. Don'€™t promise what you won'€™t deliver.

Case in point. A store manager failed a drug test and then was harassed to tears over the next year. Loss prevention was then sent around to find all the dirt they could find on them regarding their activities. The supervisor then commented to another store manager one he liked a lot more that his (supervisor) goal was to get them closer to home as soon as possible. This meant that the store manager whom asks for help from our company and was singled out and the dogs were turn loose on them. And they are still after them.

Case in point. Our area supervisor decided this year to change the way he graded our evaluations this year from different years. He decided this and let us know when he gave us our evaluations. I ask would the right thing to have done would be to notify in the beginning of his term and not wait until the evaluation is given. The criteria did not change, but his interpretation of it did. He stated that evaluations that were done in previous years were said to contain too much fluff. For a senior supervisor to say that previous rating€™s given his current management staff were overrated after being in a district for less than one year to astonishing.

It appears to me that a rift between the past district manager and their previous v.p. existed to the point when the current supervisor had taken over he was instructed to revamp his current management staff€™s. The current district manager said in a store manager meeting that "No Exa€™s" in his district were promotable€ to store managers. Would the right thing to say be, "€œwhat needs to be done to get these future managers promotable?" Cause now it has spread throughout his district! The attitude is now why should I try; I am not going anywhere anyway! Do what little it takes to get by! €œAs far as you want to go! As long as you meet these criteria!

Case in point. Managers give preference to mgt€™s that are younger and college educated. They have better training opportunities, schedules, more one on one time with store managers, specific store duties, office responsibilities. They even promised stores to younger, educated graduates over employees that have been dedicated longer, but don'€™t fit the company's long term goal. Potential managers are judged by age, education, appearance, weight and R.O.I. (RETURN ON INVESTMENT). I have seen multiple cases, one in which I helped trained the mgt, that now has a store.

Let me explain: This is discrimination! The training provided in the field was good, informative and useless, since it was never put into practice. Eventually company wide legal action will be taken, unless changes can be made. Power in numbers! March 7, 2007. I present you these situations with the solution to solve them. The online solution that no one feels is without recourse and you don'€™t really find out what'€™s going on in the field.

One of the largest retailers solved the problem this way. They instituted mail in evaluation regarding all management staff including district staff from the management staff within the stores. The envelopes were district coded and were broke down by the following; the form would be an evaluation of their direct or indirect supervisor above them. Store manager would rate district staff and would be reviewed by the district supervisor. Store managers would rate the district supervisor and reviewed by the area supervisor. Exa€™s/Mgt€™s would rate their store manager€™s and be reviewed by both the district supervisor and area supervisor.

Meetings would be established once or twice daily over a two day breakdown. By laying all the cards on the table and plans to solve them, you turn a negative into a positive. EVERYBODY WINS AND WE SAVE LEGAL EXPENSES! Each of the three procedures would include a meeting of each group, and a plan put in place for each group. The plan would then be sent to each group that rated the preceding group or the rating group could present the solutions.

No names would be listed, but let the ratings speak for themselves. A reason for a rating of needs improvement and below would be required. If we had this procedure in place we could have saved several hundred million dollars, and built a better business and personal relationship with each other. Monday, September 1st will be this year'€™s Labor Day for 2008. Let'€™s make it a new beginning for a new year to come! Checks and balances! "€œABSOLUTE POWER CORRUPTS ABSOLUTELY"€!!! Well, can you hit the MARK!

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Walgreens Customers
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BALTIMORE, MARYLAND -- I am an assistant manager at Walgreens, and for those of you who complain about us employees, I think you need to look at things from our point of view. First of all, if you approach us with an attitude, we are probably not going to go out of our way for you. I do not appreciate people telling me how to do my job and that whatever the problem is, is all my fault; when in reality it is not.

Most of the time I will do whatever I can for the customer. The only thing I ask from the customers is to be nice, and not to yell at me. Put yourselves in the other person's shoes. I think if half of you ever worked in a busy retail environment you would know where I am coming from. I used to relate to my customers all the time, and sometimes get to know them.

But now, after only three years, I dread seeing most of you when you come to talk to me. There are a lot of ways Walgreens compensates the customers if something goes wrong. For example, if we are out of a product when it is on sale, we give you a rain check. One of the reasons we run out of items is because on the first day of the sale customers come in a buy over what our set limit is, and then get mad at us when they point out there is a limit. It is a double standard. You get angry when we have it and we will not let you buy the shelf out, and then you get angry when we are out of it because some careless person bought way over the limit.

Also, our stockrooms are only so big. OK, so aside from items being out, people complain when they come to photo and want their pictures in one hour. Yes we have one hour photo, and most of the time that is no problem at all. But there are some occasions when we have to say, "I'm sorry, it will be 2 hours," and then we get yelled at for that. Unfortunately, sometimes we are busy, or someone comes in ahead of you with 12 rolls of wedding pictures and beats you to the punch. We cannot help that.

There are so many other things I get yelled at for every day by customers. It is ridiculous. I would never go into a store and scream at someone who works there. It is just plain wrong. Whatever happened to treat people how you want to be treated? I am sure there are some situations that warrant getting angry and frustrated with us, and I understand that. But you also have to understand we get frustrated too, but we cannot go off the handle like some customers do.

If we start yelling back, there is good chance we will lose our jobs. So we just have to stand back and take it which is not fair. I could go on forever, but I won't. I would love to handle every one of your complaints and give you a just reason on why some of these things happen, but like I said before, we normally try to find a solution to all your problems. Everyone has a bad day every once and a while, and that includes us. So in advance I am sorry if you come across an employee that is not extremely helpful, just put yourself in our shoes, and I think you will be a little more understanding if you just do that. Thank you for your time.

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Denver, Hampden & Tamarac Store
By -

DENVER, COLORADO -- I've owned a home within blocks of the Walgreens at Tamarac and Hampden in Denver, CO for many yrs now, making it hard to pass up running over to for sales rather than traveling to another Walgreens or another chain store. However, I've yet to walk out of this store in a good mood.

1) If the Sunday sales section advertises something I just cannot seem to pass up, when I get there (on the same Sunday), they, more often than not, don't have the specialty sales items in stock (but always have a nice alternate product if I wish to pay the additional cost for it.)

I've also been told what days (that is to say, which days of the active sale dates) to expect to maybe find something - regardless of the dates the sale is advertised good on - and I've been told they don't issue rain checks anymore and that I just need to make sure and come in on the days they receive shipments or, they're always happy it seems to show me an alternative at a higher price. (Didn't I learn about something called bait and switch in grade school?!)

2) More often than not I check my receipt only to find out the sales aren't ringing up. (Usually due to my time and rushed schedule, it becomes more expensive to go back through the register price corrections than to overpay, but once you do insist on a price check, they inform you that it was an expired sale, the signs for which just haven't been removed, or that the shelves were mis-tagged/mis-stocked and the item really is several dollars more and, then, act miffed when you insist they take the item off the ticket altogether in that case.)

3) The camera department has LOST one batch of pics for over a week, and never offered to reimburse for the extra $$s paid for 24 hr pick up. Another time, non-replaceable pics taken with a throw-away camera grabbed at a last minute and turned in with explicit request, order and payment to be returned on a cd to be loaded to a computer, were simply processed, the film cut, (and no cd) making the purpose of taking the pics (to share via email and sites) not possible.

They had to be scanned at home and touched up to get the best possible quality, but what they weren't, was a clear pic from a cd. Walgreens offered no apology or refund for these mishaps, simply stating what had happened as if these were acceptable risks to be expected by the customer.

The manager of the store, a very non-apologetic, defensive, it's up to the customer to get here when we have it personality who doesn't seem to feel the customers time is at all important, OR their business with Walgreens for that matter, is actually MORE uncomfortable to deal with since it means hearing all the reasoning and supports felt by the manager to support your wasted trip and the stores lack of stock/availability or rain checks as last options. Apparently, customers are here to meet the schedules and stocking policies of this particular Walgreens.

This is not new at this store. As I said I've lived within blocks for many many years, and when I've commented to others in the neighborhood, they've also been familiar with the issues - it's a stones throw away though, making even the most irritated of customers consider it initially rather than drive through a blizzard or on icy roads to get to another. (Right until you're standing there being lectured on store rain check policy and why the manager doesn't like to order the items advertised that you've just spent your precious time coming out to the store to give them your money for, etc etc.)

I decided finally to make a complaint on the Walgreens corp website, only, guess what.... there's no complaint form to be readily found for customer concerns specifically - there's a toll free # where the person answering the call also can't give you any idea of how to send a complaint via the website, but gives you another # to call, this one leading to a menu that at the end of picking #s to get to the correct department, gives a message that no one can help you right now, please call another time (followed by dead air).

While I'm sure there is (somewhere on the site) a form to fill out with concerns and complaints, they have done their best to make it difficult to find (unlike the more reliable companies that give you an obvious, stand-out link on the front page inviting consumer comments and concerns - although, these companies are also the ones you never have concerns or complaints about to begin with - something to think about as well.)

So, I'm simply not going to use Walgreens at all (any Walgreens) and am suggesting to neighbors who've had similar experiences, that they use any of the 3 other pharmacy inclusive stores within 1 to 3 miles of the neighborhood and, maybe, another chain will take over this store location and one will finally be able to open up a Sunday sales paper and actually find what's advertised at the store across the way on walking in, AND, without having to accommodate a store managers supply schedules or spend twice as much on something they DO have when they DON'T have what they advertise etc. Consider it.

I own my home and don't see why I shouldn't be able to go to the nearest store in my neighborhood and get good, credible and reliable service unfortunately, unless the purpose of shopping there is unrelated to sales to attract you in or advertised special prices, it's not to be found at this location.

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Why Does Walgreens Need My Social Security #?
StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 1/51

ARLINGTON STORE # 13941, VIRGINIA -- Went in to buy a couple of non-prescription items and one was on sale. Was asked if I had a discount card. When stated "no", was told I could get one if I gave the cashier my social security # and birthdate. I wasn't born yesterday but definitely not last night. Walgreens is another "Target" waiting to happen.

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Slow Service
StarStarEmpty StarEmpty StarEmpty StarBy -
Rating: 2/51

ORLANDO, FLORIDA -- I have been waiting in the walk-in clinic for over an hour now. They only have 1 nurse practitioner and have been waiting a very long time. They should have at least 2 nurse practitioners and should move quicker. I would recommend going somewhere else.

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Great Choice
StarStarStarStarStarBy -
Rating: 5/51

DOUGLASVILLE, GEORGIA -- I noticed that a new girl was hired recently named Lechantel. Great Choice, she have great laughter and so attentive to the customers. She even encouraged me to get the flu shot which she explained to me about the process. I normally don't get that sort of treatment. It was as if I've known her for a lifetime. Very classy lady.

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Wrongful Termination
By -

KINGSBURG, CALIFORNIA -- I am a former employee of Walgreens. I got terminated recently because of false accusations brought on by an assistant manager. I was accused of giving a family member an employee discount when in fact it never happened. Anyone who works or has worked for Walgreens knows that some employees are given pm's, monies, or incentives for selling Walgreens named products. I actually did ring up family member because I was actually pushing some products which paid a pm. I had another employee witness the transaction. I did not want to be accused of giving a discount.

Anyway a month later, loss prevention came in and decided to terminate me on the word of the assistant manager. There was no investigation, no proof. I lost my livelihood, my 401k, and other investments, after working for this company for 3 yrs. I understand store policy does not allow for employees ringing up family, but because we are expected to reach a certain quota per day on pm's, I rang the family member with a witness. If we do not meet quota we are questioned as to why are our pm's so low and why are sales so low. I was just trying to meet my quota.

By the way the assistant manager and loss prevention could not come up with an exact date but proceeded to charge me for the unproven discount anyway. I called corporate and told them I could prove I did not give the discount but of course they only believed what loss prevention told them. Meanwhile I am out of a job and have face the fact that I was accused of theft. That company treats their employees so unfairly. They cut some employees' hrs. back so much that employees are forced to quit. They go on to preach how we are all a family, well I would not want backstabbing family like that.

They would rather see their employees suffer financially than to admit that they are hurting financially just like other companies out there. If there are other Walgreens employees out there who are falsely accused of something as a means to terminate them, let me know.

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No Privacy
By -

DAPHNE, ALABAMA -- Our pharmacy staff has never been cheerful, I've never faulted them for that knowing Walgreens commercials with the pharmacist who Knows Your Name and loves to help is a selling tool. I use a very expensive medication, $59.00 supplies you with 4 pills and that is with insurance. This makes me a frequent flier to Walgreens because I can only buy an amount I have money for.

On a stop at Walgreens I asked this grumpy young assistant how many pills I had left on my prescription. His reply was "Well how do we know when you buy such weird quantities?" There is no privacy at this pharmacy and if you are 4th, 5th or 6th in line your prescription will be yelled out to you. I as most customers sit in the benches and wait and feel sick to hear customers private information shouted across the pharmacy.

Two weeks ago a customer came in to fill what must have been a narcotic. She left her information and walked around the store. The pharmacy was buzzing with excitement, all of a sudden this ridiculous blubber assistant yells out for a store full of customers to hear "She had it filled at another store". He was so excited if they had a big bell he would have been ringing it. This customer was paged brought to the front of the pharmacy window and told she was lying and they could not fill it.

I have no problem denying an early refill but come on, how disgraceful. The pharmacist should have taken her to the privacy window and explained why it could not be filled early. I work with indigent patients and they are hanging on by a thread, a smile means everything. All the customers were shocked, do we have no privacy?? Is this the real Walgreens commercial?

I talked to those around me and could not resist telling the Pharmacist how disgraceful I thought their actions were. Wonder who they talked about after I left. My husband is a physician and most doctors utilize the new E system- they know what pills you have taken since birth with a click of a button. There is no need for a pharmacist to police their stores anymore, or disregard our privacy. Thank you.

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Terminated for Filing Hostile Work Environment Claim
By -

I was a Walgreens Assistant Store Manager for almost four years. In March, after eight months of ongoing harassment, I filed a hostile work environment claim with the company, as was my right according to the company. However, rather than taking my claim seriously, Loss Prevention sent out a clown of an investigator, who claimed she talked to "everyone" in the store and found no such claim of hostile work environment. I guess Loss Prevention, in claiming to talk to everyone, forgot to talk to anyone in the store except the store manager's pet. So the five people that would have supported the claims, well, they just don't count as everyone.

I was transferred for two weeks. Then I was transferred again. Just before leaving, I was warned by the store manager to be careful of the new store manager I was going to work for, because he had a history of firing people for minor infractions. So I went to the new store, where another assistant manager was fired within weeks. Why? Because she took a sick day, which she was allowed to do by the company. The manager said, he didn't like it when people took sick days, and fired her.

Then three months later, just out of the blue, I'm brought into the office, where I'm told that I supposedly sexually harassed another male employee. When I deny this charge and refuse to make a statement other than I didn't do it, my sanity is called into question by the same loss prevention investigator that again "talked to everyone." So, loss prevention has a history of "investigating" but not actually investigating and lying, so they can find whatever the District Manager wants them to find and fire people. Loss Prevention basically accused me of disgusting acts, but couldn't prove anything because it never happened.

This is the supposed pharmacy America trusts. Walgreens makes things up to protect their own. They don't care about their employees. Rather they would rather ruin people's lives with made up charges, just to protect themselves. I was retaliated against because I filed a claim to protect myself from a bad situation. But because the only witnesses to this event were two 20+ year employees of the company, my lawyers say they could put them on the stand, but they would lie about it. So I can't sue, because if I did, all Walgreens managers would do is lie about the situation. This is the culture that prevails within this company.

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