L.A. Panel Urges Chains to Open More Stores in Underserved Areas

A blue-ribbon commission here has recommended that grocery executives operating stores within the city make a commitment to locate at least one new store a year in underserved communities in the area "[rather than] simply use the rhetoric of 'neighborhood markets' and 'good neighbors' without fulfilling these promises."

LOS ANGELES — A blue-ribbon commission here has recommended that grocery executives operating stores within the city make a commitment to locate at least one new store a year in underserved communities in the area "[rather than] simply use the rhetoric of 'neighborhood markets' and 'good neighbors' without fulfilling these promises." Not only would providing more stores in underserved areas be the right thing to do, the commission said, but it would also mean residents would not have to drive miles out of their way to shop for low-cost, healthy foods, and it would provide jobs for residents within those communities. The report also called on the industry to maintain consistent standards of variety, cleanliness and employee professionalism throughout the city to safeguard the public's health and safety. The commission was made up of representatives from community and religious organizations, which based their recommendations on testimony from industry workers, health professionals and others during public hearings in May.

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