LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) - "When I got this notice on May 16, is the first time I had ever heard that my friends are not welcome there," said an anonymous employee with the Salvation Army Store in Lafayette.
She said she was upset last week when she was forced to sign a memo, which states that store employees' friends are no longer allowed to shop where they work.
"I took issue with my friends and family being excluded and discriminated against," said the employee.
She said workers and their family members have always been banned from shopping at the store where they work, and that's always bothered her. Yet, this new policy, which includes friends, is something she won't stand for.
"It makes me embarrassed to be associated with the Salvation Army if they're going to treat my friends and family that way," said the employee.
Yet, Salvation Army Administrator Steven McNary said this policy is not new.
He said this policy went into effect more than a decade ago, after stores began experiencing a high volume of internal theft.
"What happens is the consumer, our buyer, never got the product because we saw that our employees put it up, or stashed it, or sent their family members in to buy it," said McNary. "We saw that it was hurting our sales."
When News 18 asked McNary about the friends policy, he said friends shouldn't be included in the policy.
"Employees can't shop there, family can't shop there, but friends shouldn't be on there," said McNary.
Yet, on the memo Lafayette workers received Thursday, friends are listed. That's something workers said they want removed.
The memo also states those who don't comply could face termination.
McNary said workers and their family members are only banned from shopping at the store in which they work. He said they are allowed to shop at other Salvation Army locations. However, workers said because there is only one store in Lafayette, that policy isn't fair.
News 18 placed several calls to local attorneys on Monday to see if it is legal to ban friends and family members from the store. Our calls were either not returned, or attorneys declined comment.
An Indiana teenager honored for helping save two children from icy waters in 2010 has died in a weekend shooting.
As temperatures drop, the use of homeless shelters go up.
A Lafayette man is jailed without bond following a series of attacks by his pit bull.