The Disturbing Reason Family Dollar Is Facing $1.2 Million In Fines

While inflation is leading shoppers to buy more at dollar stores, stores such as Family Dollar are a refreshing sight to behold. Per NPR, many Americans began shopping at dollar stores more often during the height of the pandemic. Consumer Reports reporter Brian Vines said the shift occurred for both money-saving reasons and to reduce germ spread in a less-packed environment. "Consumers are clearly feeling pinched by inflation and looking to stretch their grocery dollar," R.J. Sheedy, president of Grocery Outlet told CNN. "We have seen more new customers shopping us."

Family Dollar prides itself on keeping most of its items below $10. Items that can be found at the store include toys, apparel, health products, food, household cleaners, and tons more. But as important as it is for your grocery trips to be affordable, they also need to be safe. The company was recently fined a large sum of money for some practices you might not expect.

A hazardous workplace

Family Dollar, which is owned by the same company as Dollar Tree, currently owes OSHA $1.2 million in fines due to safety violations, per the U.S. Department of Labor. This comes seven months after an employee died at one of its Orlando locations after trying to stop a shoplifter. "Family Dollar has shown time and again that their priority is profits, not their employees. Our inspection revealed multiple unsafe conditions that management should have addressed, including locked doors and blocked exits," OSHA Area Office Director Sarah Carle said in an OSHA press release.

In over 500 inspections conducted by OSHA at the chain's stores since 2017, more than 300 violations were flagged including blocked fire extinguishers, unstable stacks of merchandise, and unsafe walking conditions for employees (per U.S. Department of Labor). "Time and time again, we find the same violations ... Each hazard can lead to a tragedy," OSHA's Assistant Secretary Doug Parker said. In the next 15 days, the company must either comply or contest the findings in front of the OSHA Review Commission.