MODESTO, CALIF. A 7-Eleven in California has found a way to keep people from panhandling and loitering outside the store: crank up classical music.
Sukhi Sandhu, who owns the franchise in Modesto, said his customers tell him they feel safer since he started blasting symphonies and occasional operas over outdoor speakers.
“Once the music started, the riffraff left,” said Manuel Souza, who’s homeless and jokingly referred to himself as part of the riffraff. The loud music makes it hard “to hang out and gossip and joke around” near the store, Souza told the Modesto Bee last week from under a tree down the block.
The classical music is part of a 7-Eleven program that encourages non-confrontational methods to reduce loitering, Sandhu said. It eliminates any risks faced by clerks when asking panhandlers to leave, he said.