Barney's Coughs Up $525K Over Racial Profiling
Settles investigation, will hire anti-profiling consultant
By Shelley Hazen, Newser User
Posted Aug 12, 2014 2:12 PM CDT
   (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II, file)

(Newser) – Barney’s will shell out $525,000 to settle accusations that it racially profiled black and Hispanic shoppers at its Madison Avenue Store, the New York Times reports. Reached Friday, the agreement concludes a state investigation into complaints against Barney’s; state AG Eric Schneiderman continues a similar probe at Macy’s, the New York Daily News adds. The investigation began when Barney’s accused two black shoppers of credit card fraud—Trayon Christian, 19, who was detained after buying a $349 belt, and Kayla Phillips, 21, who bought a $2,500 purse. The state uncovered other incidents—learning that Barney’s security guards "exclusively identified minority customers as warranting surveillance" to help the store stem a jump in shoplifting and credit card fraud.

Barney’s CEO Mark Lee tells the Times that the terms of the agreement will make the store stronger, insisting the retailer is a "truly progressive company that has absolutely no tolerance for discrimination." The state has ordered Barney’s to hire an anti-profiling consultant, improve its recordkeeping, change how it deals with shoplifters, and limit access to surveillance video. Al Sharpton intends to hold Barney’s accountable with his own test shoppers, the AP adds. A year after the incident, Christian tells Pix 11 that the agreement "made me feel much better, like [they're] actually on top of them about something."

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Showing 3 of 31 comments
bruno937
Aug 16, 2014 12:14 AM CDT
C'mon Jessie, Al beat you to the blackmail fest again !!
rhinojake
Aug 13, 2014 12:05 PM CDT
My guess is they tried to settle these complaints out of the public eye but were unable to, particularly Mr Christian's which, if I remember correctly, was the first publicly reported incident a couple month prior to the holiday season.
TexasFed
Aug 13, 2014 9:57 AM CDT
Another example of racial profiling against Black folks; the largest consumers in the country. White folks have it "made in the shade"...they can access our schools quicker, shoplift more frequently, kill their wives then kill them selves...lol. Cowards!