ABERDEEN, N.C. (WTVD) — Signs at a pair of convenience stores are stirring up controversy in Moore County.
One sign reads: “No hoodies. No helmets. No backpacks.” It’s a message to customers prominently displayed on the entrance to Mac’s food store in Aberdeen forbidding patrons from wearing certain items inside.
“It’s not really that big of a deal,” said the manager of Mac’s Food Store, Mary Lovely told WTVD. “People come in and we understand in the winter it’s cold, but when you come in we would prefer they take their hoodie off so we can see them.”
Lovely put the sign up five months ago citing safety reasons, but not a specific incident.
“We’ve had a few incidents and that’s the reason why we ask them to leave their backpack at the door,” said Lovely.
A similar warning is displayed at the nearby Quality Mart. It reads, “No hoodies allowed.”
According to police, the decision to put up the sign is up to the individual business owner, but they don’t come without controversy. Some accuse the stores of racial profiling.
Lovely says that’s just not the case. She says it’s about protecting her store, and customers seem to be understanding.
“I really think it’s kind of silly because there’s signs at other stores,” said Lovely. “There’s signs at banks and I don’t know why it’s really such a big deal.”