Macy’s has joined its unapostrophed retail peer Barneys in announcing that it’s all done dealing with allegations of racial profiling in its stores, which includes a settlement with both the New York attorney general’s office and resolutions for various lawsuits against it.
Much like the settlement with Barneys, Macy’s is forking over a settlement fee, in this case, $650,000, reports the New York Daily News, as well as agreeing to work on you know, not discriminating against people based on the color of their skin.
Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman (not even his mother knows what the “T” stands for, but my guess is Tyrannosaurus) announced the agreement, which is the result of an investigation into allegations at Macy’s Herald Square store in NYC in February 2013.
“This agreement will help ensure that no one is unfairly singled out as a suspected criminal when they shop in New York and that all New Yorkers enjoy full and equal access to our retail establishments,” Schneiderman said.
Macy’s issued a statement pledging its fealty to diversity, reading in part:
“To be clear, our company’s policies strictly prohibit any form of discrimination or racial profiling and any occurrence of such behavior will not be tolerated in our organization.
Moving forward, our company will be initiating a series of measures including enhanced training and education for our loss prevention and sales associates. We also will be adopting an expanded role for our security monitor to help ensure that we have the right policies and procedures in place, and that we are constantly reviewing our compliance with them.
We at Macy’s are committed to fulfilling to the ideals of diversity, inclusion and respect that our company aspires to achieve – every day, in every store and office, with every customer and associate.”
In addition, Macy’s says it’s “settled in principal” a number of private lawsuits tied to the allegations.
Officials started looking into Macy’s after reports of racial profiling at that store and at Barneys in the winter of 2013.
Schneiderman’s office reviewed 18 complaints from 2007 to 2014 involving minority customers who claimed to have been held wrongly for shoplifting at the Herald Square store. Investigators found that Macy’s detained 1,947 people in a one-year period at the store, compared to about 6,000 total at Macy’s other 42 stores in New York state.
Minorities were profiled and detained “at rates far greater than those for white customers,” according to the findings contained in the settlement.
Macy’s must now pay off its fine in the next three years, improve training for staff and also hire an independent expert to monitor its anti-discrimination efforts for Schneiderman’s office.