Bill Donohue comments on Macy’s repeated payouts, totaling more than $1 million, for illegal racial profiling in its New York stores:
Back in 2005, Macy’s paid New York State $600,000 to settle a complaint that its New York stores engaged in racial profiling. The settlement followed an investigation in which the New York Attorney General’s office found that most people detained on suspicion of shoplifting at a sampling of Macy’s stores around the state were African- American and Latino. The numbers were disproportionate to the percentages of black and Latino shoppers at these stores.
One would have thought Macy’s had learned its lesson. But in 2014, it was nailed again, this time on complaints from 18 customers at its Herald Square store in Manhattan. The complainants, who were from African-American, Latino or other minority communities, were all detained on suspicion of shoplifting. They claimed they were innocent and alleged that they were not allowed phone calls, were denied interpreters and were forced to sign trespass notices they did not understand. When the state Attorney General again got involved, Macy’s agreed to yet another payout, this one for $650,000.
So let’s see if we’ve got this straight: When it comes to its public restroom policies, Macy’s believes that treating everyone equally means letting men use the women’s bathrooms—and firing an employee simply for believing differently (click here). But when it comes to shoplifting prevention, Macy’s has a history of unequal treatment, specifically targeting people based on their ethnicity or skin color.
Contact Macy’s VP for Corporate Communications and External Affairs Jim Sluzewski: firstname.lastname@example.org