Deaf Publix employee says woman punched her because she thought she was being ignored

Employee usually communicates with shoppers by pad, paper

By Shannon McLellan - Social Media Producer

MIDLOTHIAN, Va. - A deaf Publix employee in Virginia says she was punched in the back by a woman while working at the store on Sunday afternoon, WRIC reports.

Liberty Gratz, who is deaf and has vision loss, says she could not hear a customer who asked her where an item was because she was turned stocking a bottom shelf in the store. 

Gratz says she doesn't always see people behind her because she doesn't have peripheral vision. So when she felt the blow to her back, it was completely unexpected.

After Gratz was punched, she says she pointed the woman in the right direction of where the item was. Gratz usually communicates with customers using a pen and paper.

Her mother says Gratz could still feel the punch when she picked her up from the store. The Publix store managers attempted to find security footage, but couldn't make out who had done it.

Gratz says she would love to sit down with the woman and educate her on being kind to people with disabilities. 

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