Where it hurts the person on the low or fixed income is in the notice that they gave for getting rid of the program. There's no doubt that many people use it for Christmas shopping, and that makes it tough. If they'd announced now that they'd get rid of it in November of next year, it'd be a different story. Those same shoppers could take the money they have been giving to the lay away person, and put it away in savings (either in the bank or in a coffee can) for months in advance to finance their shopping. Heck, put it in a savings account, and it'd actually benefit the shopper to be gathering a bit (albeit it a small bit) of interest on the money.