Willliam’s Florists of Jersey City, the largest in the nation, announced on Monday that it will pay an additional $15 million to improve its safety and security.
The decision comes amid a string of robberies and assaults in the city, and follows months of controversy surrounding the local business.
In October, Willliam had to pull its business from the Mall in Miami because of the escalating spate of robberies in the area.
That followed a series of deadly attacks at nearby restaurants, including a stabbing at the Holiday Inn in downtown Miami in January.
In March, a gunman struck and killed two men at a pizza parlor in Jersey City.
Willliams also said it would increase security at its outlets in the immediate area, and hire additional security guards.
The company said it has hired additional security officers, including several in Florida.
“I’m very proud to have the opportunity to take on the challenge of improving safety and securing the lives of our guests,” said William’s CEO, Michael D. Smith.
“The increase in the number of crimes is alarming.
But, it is only part of the picture.
More to come.
The news comes after a string of incidents that have rattled the neighborhood, with several reports of people being robbed, threatened, and assaulted in the past few months.
A week after the January stabbing, an employee of the Holiday Resort Casino and Spa in Jersey City was stabbed to death by a man who reportedly attacked her at the popular eatery.
The stabbing was the first homicide in the resort since 2005.
Another robbery occurred in May, when a man shot at a police officer who was patrolling a popular tourist spot on the city’s waterfront.
And in July, two men broke into a Jersey City restaurant and assaulted a waitress who was working there.
Smith said Willliam would continue to work with the city to improve security measures in the Jerica area.
Smith and the company also announced that they would be making a series of changes to its operations, including hiring more security guards, adding additional security cameras, and installing new technology that will detect and prevent robberies.
Earlier this year, Smith said the company would also be investing $150 million in a new security system, which it plans to launch this fall.