My family was wondering why exactly the 7-Eleven in Steamboat Springs was going out of business. Thursday morning I happened by the 7-Eleven location and witnessed employees filling a Dumpster with packaged products including useable, nonperishable items such as boxes of liquid soap that could be utilized by others. I went for a closer look to try to offer my help in arranging a donation to a local charity, but I quickly was told, “You can’t take anything out of our Dumpster.”
Sure, that’s understandable, liability concerns. So I asked why the store was not trying to donate some of their stock to LIFT-UP that is located just two blocks away. The 7-Eleven employee said, “It’s against corporate policy.”
As an environmental volunteer for years and someone who has spent hundreds of hours volunteering in the community and schools to teach about how not to waste useful resources, I was appalled. I tried to explain to the employee that throwing useable items in the garbage was against the prevailing culture in Steamboat Springs and against human policy. Something surely could be worked out to make at least some donations happen. Again I firmly was told, “It’s against corporate policy.” So now, we know why 7-Eleven failed in Steamboat — bad corporate policies.
This served as a huge reminder to me to continue to support businesses, companies and restaurants that are more sustainable and environmentally friendly. If you don’t know for sure, just talk with the manager. If they are more eco-friendly, tell them you are pleased with their policies. If you want to learn more or want your business to become more earth friendly, as well as save resources and finances, learn more about the good work and assistance of such local organizations at Yampa Valley Sustainability Council (YVSC.org) and the Steamboat Sustainable Business Consortium (SustainableSteamboat.com).
Suzie C. Romig