A 7-Eleven in California is using a new method to get rid of loiterers by cranking classical music. Store-owner Sukhi Sandhu says its all part of a new non-confrontational method to reduce loitering and panhandling outside of shops encouraged by a corporate program.
The music is blasted out onto speakers that store clerks have complete control over. It’s believed this is a good way of eliminating risks involved with asking panhandlers to leave. “Once the music started, the riffraff left,” said Manuel Souza, a homeless man who jokes that he’s part of the riffraff. He notes that the loud classical music makes it difficult “to hang out and gossip and joke around” outside the store.
Some stores have also implemented a device that makes a high-pitched screech which sounds like a mosquito buzzing in your ear. The device can be turned on and off as needed, but Sandhu thinks the classical music is much more effective. Sandhu notes that he’s received positive feedback from customers who feel much safer since he started playing the music.