The plastic bag ban for the City of Salem went into effect on January 1, 2018. The Stop and Shop on the Peabody / Salem line has reversed initial policy and now will adhere to the plastic bag ban, passing out paper bags to customers who do not bring reusable bags. The Stop and Shop had been expected to legally elude the ban on a technicality, because the check-out stands where bags are disbursed is in Peabody, not Salem, even though the bulk of the supermarket resides in Salem.
Evidently corporate changed its mind, or had its mind changed. Let it be reminded that it was never store managers and employees who wanted to elude the plastic bag ban. When spoken to they were fully in favor of the ban, but hands were tied by corporate big wigs. What changed minds is unknown. It could have been pressure from Salem Recycling Committee, complaints from customers, pleas from store managers – whatever. Salem is much the better for the largest supermarket (mostly) within Salem following the plastic bag ban.