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Toys R Us........The Worst Customer Relations in Town?


Bazj
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Heard this earlier today and I was a bit shocked......

 

My friends wife is off work on holiday this week and decided to take their two little girls to Toys R Us for a treat.....

 

She apparently mentioned the trip to her friend who said as she didn't live too far from there; she would walk over and she would join them at Toys R Us as she had to go over to M&S to get a few bits anyway....

 

Her friend went to M&S and then walked across to Toys R Us as agreed and met up with the others. She had an M&S carrier bag with a few things she had bought in M&S.

 

After paying at the till for their purchases in Toys R Us, they headed for the exit; only to be stopped by a member of the Toys R Us staff who asked her friend to show him the contents of the M&S carrier bag.

 

She refused.... at which point he demanded (He actually used the words "I demand to see inside your bag" apparently) and told her she should have left the M&S bag in her car..... when she explained that she had walked over and didn't have a car with her he said Toys R Us do not allow customers to enter the store with carrier bags!!

 

Now my mate has since spoken to a Police Officer this afternoon and he stated that Toys R Us have no legal right to ask to search anyones bag unless they have proof that the person has been shop-lifting..... Only a Police Officer can ask to search on suspicion of a crime. Of course she was not shop-lifting so she was a bit miffed to say the least

 

The ladies in question complained to Toys R Us head office at the appalling treatment and the head office was said to be horrified.....

 

So remember; Toys R Us are all too eager for you to leave with their carrier bags under your arms and with their tills ringing from your cash, but expect to get the Spanish Inquisition if you dare to enter with someone elses bags full of stuff.....

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In all fairness though considering the size of T-R-U and the huge range of things they sell (including smaller stuff) it would be very easy for someone to slip an item into another bag/carrier bag they were carrying if they were that way 'inclined'.

 

Had they stopped me and asked I'd have just let them look in my M&S bag and I wouldn't have felt offended by that request at all proving they had asked politely of course :wink:

 

Maybe they were just a bit stroppy because she did actually refuse :oops:

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But they still cannot ask you to show the contents of any bags you are carrying unless they have evidence you are stealing Dizzy.....

 

I have no idea what was in the M&S bag, but if you had been to M&S to buy your latest sets of underwear, would you allow some spotty kid to rifle through your bag without good cause?

 

They are allowed to check bags, but only in the presence of a copper

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I do see what you are saying but what you have described really wouldn't have bothered me at all.. even if they were 'spotty'.

 

Infact I'd rather they just checked and say 'thanks' rather than to have a police person stood there or called in to do it as that would be wasting police time in most cases.

 

Now to insist on looking through someones handbag or pockets etc on a whim would be different and I would have a whinge about that but a carrier bag of newly bought shopping.... no probs.

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I cannot agree with you Dizzy, sorry, but nobody as the right to ask to look inside any carriers you may have brought into their store with you unless they have a firm suspicion that you have been shoplifting and the only way that can be claimed is if you were actually seen putting something into the carrier, which they obviously had not seen as your friend had not put anything into it.

Personally, I too would have refused and would have called for the manager to be brought and there in front of all the other customers I would have demanded an apology from him.

Of course if you refuse to allow a member of the staff to examine your bags they have two options, either to say ok, you can leave anyway, or, to hold you and call for the police, in which case you can prosecute them for false arrest. And that would bring adverse publicity for the store in question. :angry:

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Cleo, in a store as large as Toys R Us how on earth could they watch everyone so that they had a 'firm suspicion' before asking? I'm just basing it on the size and type of store and the fact that they myst have a lot of stuff pinched.

I'm sure they would only peer in the bags and have a quick look rather than to get everything out and line it up on a table for all to see.

 

I must be odd as it really wouldn't bother me and I certainly wouldn't call the manager and ask for an appology or insist the police came down and looked so I could then prosecute them.

 

Perhaps they should have a security guard on the door like Tesco's do or a sign saying 'Sorry no carrier bags'... and for those that have walked maybe little lockers where you can put your other shopping as you enter their store... or .... maybe I should just shut up :lol:

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I'm with Dizzy on this one. There is nothing to suggest the shop worker was offensive when he at first asked to look in the bag. OK, he got "demanding" afterwards, but if someone refused to let him look, surely he is entitled to be suspicious?

Shoplifting is a huge problem and stores lose millions because of it. Which means the rest of us have to pay more.

Why did the lady refuse? Sounds to me as if she may be one of the "I know my rights" brigade who very often have a great knowledge of their "rights" but not a great deal of commonsense.

 

I must admit, however, that I have never heard of shops banning other shops' carrier bags. What do they do about plain carrier bags. Does every public spirited person who buys a "bag for life" come under suspicion too?

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I’ve been visiting a lot of National Trust properties this year and people are asked to leave bags and even umbrellas in a secure room before starting any tours. This is infinitely more acceptable than asking to look in their bags on exiting and maybe certain stores should provide similar facilities?

 

To be fair though, Baz’s example is a bit of a one off because this is an out of town outlet with it’s own car park and the vast majority that go there do so by car and so would leave any other bags in their car. So the woman in question is the odd one out here and what’s more she’s doing exactly what the town centre shoplifters do i.e. carry a huge carrier bag. In view of this, I don’t think it’s unreasonable for security guard to request to see inside her bag In fact if he didn’t ask, he’d not be doing his job.

 

Bill :)

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It is a difficult situation for both sides. If it was me I'm not sure how I would react.

 

If I was met with poor manners or bad attitude when originally asked I would refuse. I would also point out that it should have been specified at the entrance that carrier bags are not allowed.

 

I can understand the lady refusing as private stuff may have been in her M&S bag that she would not want every Tom, Dick and Harry to know about.

 

When I was in Tenerife earlier this year, they had lockers at the entrance to lock your other shopping away. It worked quite well and was easy enough to get used to. Maybe that could be a new policy for shops who suffer from shop lifting.

 

Lesson learned I'm sure from Toy's R Us as no doubt this publicity will be brought to there attention and they may change there attitude now.

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Next time you go into T R U, Dizzy, look around, high up, there are cameras everywhere and in the control room several screens which just about covers the whole store so it's comparatively easy to spot anyone acting suspiciously and/or slipping something into their bag. The control room security staff have a direct link to the shop floor security staff who would then be at the door ready for when the shoplifter left the store. Notice I said left the store because untill they actually leave the store without paying for any item/s they cannot be accused of shoplifting and that is by law.

If there is a security gaurd stood permanently by the door watching people leave and asking to look in their bags he is certainly not doing his job properly. He should be walking the floor watching, unobtrusively, what shoppers are upto and possibly letting his presence be known as a deterrent.

If there is a particular shoplifting problem with a store then it is upto them to employ security personnel in plain clothes, posing as shoppers while observing the real shoppers but, again, if they suspect or know a person has concealed any item/s with the purpose of leaving without paying they MUST allow the person to leave the store before challenging them.

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Maybe they do have undercover people working there but who’d know. :unsure:

 

I maybe laboured my point earlier but from a security perspective, that person had to be standing out like a Christmas tree with a sore thumb. We’ve had the arguments here before about security profiling and how it makes sense but now this logic is being completely turned around because it’s a friend.

 

If this were a town centre store where it’s the norm to walk around with other bags then I think even I might have objected. It’s just unfortunate that in this instance, Baz’s friend had the profile of a shoplifter due simply to carrying a bag. I really don’t think it would matter which shop she went in second, the outcome would probably be exactly the same so given this, you have to wonder if it’s right to specifically try and slag off Toy’s or Us?

 

Bill :)

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I’ve been visiting a lot of National Trust properties this year and people are asked to leave bags and even umbrellas in a secure room before starting any tours. This is infinitely more acceptable than asking to look in their bags on exiting and maybe certain stores should provide similar facilities?

 

To be fair though, Baz’s example is a bit of a one off because this is an out of town outlet with it’s own car park and the vast majority that go there do so by car and so would leave any other bags in their car. So the woman in question is the odd one out here and what’s more she’s doing exactly what the town centre shoplifters do i.e. carry a huge carrier bag. In view of this, I don’t think it’s unreasonable for security guard to request to see inside her bag In fact if he didn’t ask, he’d not be doing his job.

 

Bill :)

 

Bill....

 

The whole Gemini area has a dedicated bus stop so people do go there on the bus and don't always have a car....

 

and as for your last point.... he wasn't a security guard, he was a member of staff and they are not allowed to demand to stop and search someones bags unless they have evidence to prove they are shoplifting (store detective or CCTV)

 

That isn't just store policy, that is the law. only a police officer can search your bag or a police officer has to be present while they search your bag, but under no circumstances can they search your person without there being a police officer present, other wise its assault.

 

I'm not even sure that a store detective/security guard can without permission and until you have left the premises you have not stolen anything.

 

So they shouldn't be asking.....

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Plenty of places don't allow people to bring bags in with them, and if you've walked past a sign which says so then you've got to expect to be treated with suspicion. If you then get on your high horse and refuse to co-operate with a reasonable request then the suspicion is only going to deepen.

 

If there was a sign saying "no bags" which the friend missed, there could also easily have been one which said that persons entering the premises consent to being searched if asked by staff - most places I go to with work have such signs and DO conduct both random and targetted security searches on people as the depart.

 

If there is such a sign, then you've given the security staff the right to search by entering the premises.

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If there was a sign saying "no bags" which the friend missed, there could also easily have been one which said that persons entering the premises consent to being searched if asked by staff - most places I go to with work have such signs and DO conduct both random and targetted security searches on people as the depart.

If there is such a sign, then you've given the security staff the right to search by entering the premises.

 

I have never seen such a sign in a store and if I did I would walk straight out again (and so, I'm sure, would many others) not because I have anything to hide but because I consider it an invasion of my privacy. Thus the store would have lost my custom - and my money!

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Well let me put it this way Baz, if they run busses up there then I’ve never seen them or have I noticed people walking around up that way. It’s an out of town development not designed or probably ever intended for anything other than the private motorist and I doubt there are even footpaths up there? I’d bet that people getting there without a car would probably be a fraction of one percent.

 

But look, if the manager or security bloke or whoever the he was had grounds to be suspicious and requested to see inside the bag then I think that’s reasonable. Strictly speaking, it might not be legal to demand anything but there shouldn’t be any issue with asking politely and I’m guessing now but that’s probably how this started.

 

Bill :)

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Bill.... you still don't get it do you...... A shop assistant CANNOT ask to see into your bags on suspicion. They have to have hard evidence and even then they need a proper store detective or a copper present.... that is the law

 

As for the Bus Stops... there is the biggest bus stop outside of the bus station right outside M&S and there are footpaths all over the place (In fact they have just installed a new one) the Gemini is within walking distance of Callands and Westbrook...... Maybe if you haven't noticed all these things, I would be a bit concerned about you driving and maybe you should get your eyes checked out!

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An amusing tale. My nephew, aged 19 at the time and a strapping, handsome, six footer, once went shopping with his mother at a well known busy supermarket (which shall remain unnamed). At the checkout the girl at the till finished checking out the items in the trolley. She then turned to my nephew and asked, "What about that packet of biscuits?"

Somewhat puzzled my nephew asked her, "What biscuits?"

Those biscuits you've got down your trousers!" the girl replied accusingly.

"I haven't got any biscuits down down my trousers." he told her.

"Yes you have!" the girl insisted.

Not being one to mess around, my nephew then unfastened his trousers and let them fall around his ankles, to the amusement of people in the queue behind him.

"Where's the packet of biscuit then!?" he asked then added, "would you like me to drop my boxers too? I will if that's what you want. I don't mind!"

Somewhat red faced the girl told him to move on.

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No Baz try reading what I said. It might not be legal but he can ask. It's just like the police have no rights to enter your house without a warrant but that doesn’t stop them from asking if they can come in.

 

If your friend had nothing to hide, a little understanding and quick peek in the bag could probably have saved a lot of heartache but instead they chose the I know my rights route.

 

Bill :)

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Baz... did the spotty shop worker (who you and Cleo say has no legal rights to ask or look) actually ask the lady politely in the first instance (before she refused) ?

 

Simple question.. and just wondering... as I still can't understand what all the fuss is about.

 

Everything else I was going to say has already been said.

 

PS Cleo I am well aware that shops like Toys R Us and most others have CCTV and also how the larger ones have security 'watchers' with direct links to the shop floor staff thanks... I do get out sometimes you know. :lol: They can't watch every isle, every person or all camera screen shots all the time though can they? :?

 

It still wouldn't bother me if I was asked (politely) as they are only doing their job and are doing what they have been told to do.

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It's a matter of principle. It is inferring that because you take a carrier bag or such into a store, that you are a shop lifter. We always take our own bags with us, and even take stuff bought somewhere else. I would walk out if they even suggested that they look in my shopping bag or my wife's.

 

I would suggest that this person had just been on a "spot the shop-lifter course" and was over enthusiastic, having left his brain at home and was doing the job via the text-book.

 

They need just cause to even suspect someone.

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