According to Philadelphia 8th District Councilwoman Cindy Bass, shopkeepers protecting themselves with bulletproof plexiglass represents an “indignity” to her constituents and should therefore be banned.
For Jeff Liu, the thick plexiglass window that separates him from patrons at his Germantown beer deli, Kenny’s Seafood & Steak, is a matter of safety. For City Councilwoman Cindy Bass, the barrier window is an insult.
The plexiglass partition serves to protect workers from crime, but it also cuts them off from customers — a literal and metaphorical divider between their worlds.
Several years ago, after Liu argued with a man selling drugs in the Wayne Avenue deli’s lobby, the man returned with a rifle and shot Liu’s car, shattering its windows, Liu said.
Bass says the windows only foster a sense that the establishment – more specifically, its clientele – is dangerous. And that too many of those stores masquerade as eateries when their biggest sales draw is alcohol, feeding vices in the city’s struggling neighborhoods.