Tell Safeway: Reinstate Worker Suspended For Preventing Brutal Assault
On April 21, Ryan Young stepped between a man and his girlfriend when they were fighting near the meat counter at the Safeway store. Young later told police the man they arrested, Quyen Van Tran, was kicking the woman, who was five or six months pregnant. When Tran didn’t back down, Young struck him.
“The Guy Was Out Of Control”
From CBS San Francisco:
“Every few seconds he would turn around and push her and then he actually kicked her,” Young said. “I told him to calm down and he was just irate.”
“I saw no one was intervening in the situation and I just became afraid for her safety and also other customers safety,” Young said. “The guy was out of control and pretty much lost it in there.”
Del Rey Oaks Police Chief Ron Langford personally responded to the domestic disturbance call along with other officers. Langford later wrote the store manager a letter commending Young for his actions after the department investigated the incident.
Another Safeway customer who said he witnessed the end of the altercation that day is standing by Young. Harvey Sullivan said he was doing some quick shopping when he heard yelling, witnessed the unruly customer — whom he said smelled like alcohol — fighting with a pregnant woman. Sullivan said he saw Young step between them, then strike the man. He went to put his arm around Young to help defuse the situation and ask if he was OK.
Instead Of Being Lauded As A Hero, Young Was Suspended From His Job
But instead of being lauded for his heroism, Young has been suspended from his job without pay, for supposedly violating company policy. Does this mean company policy makes it OK for a customer to assault another customer in a Safeway store? The hardship is particularly acute because Young and his wife are expecting a baby.
Safeway has urged the public to reserve judgment while it conducts a thorough investigation, saying there are two sides to every story. The company said it is proceeding through the proper grievance procedure laid out in its labor agreement, while the president of the union Young belongs to, UFCW Local 5, has said he’s working with the company to try to expedite that process.
The grocery chain released a statement to CBS affiliate KION on Wednesday. It said:
“Safeway is taking this matter seriously. We have store security video of the incident, and have been engaged in a careful and thoughtful forensic review of what transpired. There are two sides to every story, and we would ask that judgment be reserved. The matter is being handled through the union grievance procedure provided for in our labor agreement. We will be relying on the video and other relevant evidence as well as statements of eyewitnesses and other information to make a final decision. Beyond that, it is premature to comment on a personnel matter of this kind. The safety of our customers and employees is of paramount importance, and we appreciate the public’s patience as we give the issue the time and attention that it deserves.”
Take Action Now To Demand The Reinstatement Of Ryan Young!
What on earth is the issue here? Of course Ryan Young should get his job back. And why, almost a month after this incident, has no action been taken? How long does it take to watch a surveillance video?
If you agree, please sign our petition, demanding that Ryan Young be reinstated in his job, and praised for his heroism, not suspended from his job.
Photo Credit: Holcombe of Hidalgo