A COSTCO customer was shocked and offended at the self-checkout after being accused of membership theft.
Leronda Jackson of Ohio was shopping at the Centerville store when the incident happened on Wednesday.
Jackson was selected for a spot check at the self-checkout counter when the retailer cracked down on his membership cards.
Costco announced last week that it would take a stricter approach to membership cards by requiring a buyer’s ID.
The wholesaler confirmed on Friday that the company’s policy, which says the membership card is non-transferable, has been abused by non-member buyers.
This problem has worsened since the introduction of self-checkouts.
Speak with WHIOTV7told Jackson what had happened in the store.
She said, “The young lady just said, ‘I need to check your card.’ We do facial recognition. That’s our new policy.” I said, “Yes, I’ve heard about it.”
Jackson said she handed over her membership card, which had a color photo of herself on the back.
The Englewood woman explained, “She said, ‘Well, that’s not you.’
“And I said, There’s Leronda Jackson. It’s me. So she said, “No, I’m saying this picture is not the person I see.”
“So I was offended. So I thought, “Excuse me?”
“I said look, this is me, this is my card. And then, as my voice got louder, she said, “Well, I’m sorry, it’s the lighting in the store and maybe I don’t have good eyesight today.”
In the end, Jackson continued to scan her items, paid, and left.
However, she later returned to speak to an assistant manager, who apologized and blamed it on a “training issue,” she said.
The employee did not ask Jackson for a second ID confirming that she was the cardholder.
Jackson wants to see a change after posting her story on a Facebook group and finding it happens regularly.
She told the news outlet: “I want the policy to change. Find another way. Or just ask everyone about theirs [membership] card and ID. Or exit the self scan.”
“We don’t think it’s right for non-members to receive the same benefits and pricing as our members,” a Costco representative previously told The US Sun via email.
“Since we already ask for the membership card at the checkout, we now ask you to present the membership card with a photo at our self-service checkouts.”
The country’s largest wholesale club said its annual membership fees, which cost $60 for a Gold Star and $120 for Executive status, help its stores fetch lower prices.
Membership dues were $4.22 billion for the fiscal year and accounted for a good portion of last year’s $5.84 billion in profit.
The US Sun has reached out to Costco for comment.