Editor's Note: Hy-Vee released the following statement today regarding fund-raising by the group You Can Run But You Cannot Hide at the Newton store last weekend, a situation that caused concern for some customers.
To the Newton Community:
Some of our customers have expressed concern that an organization called You Can Run But You Cannot Hide was allowed to conduct fundraising at the Newton Hy-Vee. I want to apologize personally and on behalf of Hy-Vee for the presence of this group at our store.
The group presented itself to us as a suicide prevention organization, and group members said they wanted to raise money for the schools for suicide awareness. We now know they weren't completely honest with us regarding the organization's goals and activities - if they had been, we would not have permitted them to use our property for fundraising. My management team and I should have been more diligent in checking out the background of this group before granting permission to solicit at Hy-Vee. I apologize for this oversight, and assure you that we have put procedures in place to prevent such situations in the future.
Hy-Vee strives to create a welcoming environment in which all customers and employees feel respected and appreciated. The inflammatory and divisive agenda and comments made by You Can Run leaders do not reflect the opinions or values of Hy-Vee.
If any of our customers feel they were misled into contributing to this organization, I invite them to contact me personally. To assist in the cause of suicide awareness and prevention, the Newton Hy-Vee is donating $250 to Capstone Behavioral Healthcare of Newton, an organization that provides mental health counseling, treatment and prevention services in our community.
Once again, I am very sorry for any distress this situation has caused.