“TROOP STORE: ONE OF THE MOST ABUSED ENTITIES ON ISLAND”

Dear Editor,

As a military retiree's choosing to live in American Samoa, we give up most of our retirement benefits, but we do have the small Troop Store available to us. However, it is also one of if not the most abused entities on this island.

Last week, I drove in and the parking lot was full so I parked on the upper level, walked down and there were six civilians piled in the entranceway waiting for their merchandise to be delivered. I had to politely ask them to move so I could enter the store.  In addition, one civilian was parked in the disability space sitting and waiting for his gear.

This situation is obviously out of control!

The real culprits are the cardholders themselves. Every item they pass out to a civilian friend, storeowner or person asking them for a favor is denying that item from a shipmate who has earned the privilege. 

The Troop Store management seems to be only concerned with gross sales, the reserve component claims not to be budgeted to provide security. 

Someone has to step up and stop this abuse. There must be some way to discipline a reserve, a dependent or retiree of this abuse.

Proper I.D. Card inspection would eliminate those with expired cards or using someone else's card and when any cardholder is caught delivering merchandise in the parking lot, his Troop Store privileges would be curtailed. 

What is going on simply isn't right and whoever is responsible for the Troop Store operation needs to step up and be counted.

Jim Brittle

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