The days of the friendly door to door brush or vacuum or encyclopedia salesmen have gone the way of the milk man, and they’ve been replaced by the seemingly infinite inventory of internet fulfillment centers who are in our homes 24/7 without any of the awkwardness of saying no to the sales person on our front porch.
Regardless, there are still a few solicitors that are bucking the trend but admittedly they seem to be a different breed of employees.
I get that leisure suits are out of style but the new era solicitors tend to look a little sketchy which I think is part of the reason the City ends up getting calls complaining about grifters doubling as solicitors knocking on their door.
I don’t know the solicitation industry all that well but it strikes me that a lot of the new door to door sales people come from a less stable labor pool and they feel more like sales mercenaries hired for the day rather than company representatives on the payroll — or worse yet, they could be scam artists.
I’m sure there’s plenty of honorable door to door sales people out there, and the City has a permitting process for them to demonstrate their credibility by complying with a certain set of requirements before they can start knocking on any doors in Kent.
However, the City permitting process is fairly limited and we’ve seen examples where less honorable solicitors will do a little homemade permit work to present an image of acceptability when in fact they may not be — that’s when the Kent Police get involved.
As long as the idea of a market based economy has been around there’s been traveling sales people of one kind or another — and I suspect that will never change.
The City will do it’s best to screen out the riff-raff but the best option may be getting a no solicitation sign for your home. To that end, the Kent Police Department is trying to lend a helping hand and they’ve printed a thousand no solicitation stickers that they’re giving out for free.
With the police shield and the code citation for violating the solicitation ordinance listed on the sticker, we’re hoping it lends a greater sense of credibility and discourages unwelcome solicitations.
You can pick up a free sticker at the Kent Police Department either at the new police station between the hours of 8 am to 4 pm or at the old police station 24/7.