Walmart, the nation’s largest retailer, has decided to close several of its remaining stores in the city of New York after an outcry over police brutality and police misconduct in recent weeks.
The stores in question are located in the heart of Brooklyn’s poorest neighborhoods and serve as a haven for some of the city’s most vulnerable people.
“We are disappointed that our stores will not be open for business,” Walmart said in a statement to the New York Times.
“We believe that in the best interest of our community, we must work with the City of New Yorks police department to find a better solution to address this problem.
Walmart has already closed three stores in Brooklyn, and we are confident that our community can heal and rebuild together.”
The closures will affect about 2,500 employees and thousands of customers.
The company did not say when the stores will reopen, but the company said it is working with local government officials to work with community leaders to ensure a better environment for all of its employees.
Walmart is the latest to announce that it will close its stores in recent months amid a national debate over police reform and the police killings of Michael Brown and Eric Garner.
Earlier this year, Walmart shut its remaining store in the small city of St. Louis, Missouri, after protests over police killings and the Black Lives Matter movement.
The company has previously announced plans to open another New York store in Brooklyn in 2019.