U.S. News


NYC Shoppers' Bill Of Rights To Prevent Racial Profiling

Major New York City retail stores have teamed up with civil rights advocates to create the Customer Bill of Rights, meant to combat profiling.
Posted at 4:05 PM, Dec 10, 2013

Reverend Al Sharpton and other civil rights advocates have teamed up with major New York City retailers to combat racial profiling.

Macy's, Barneys, Saks Fifth Avenue, Bergdorf Goodman, Lord & Taylor and the Gap all agreed to protect against profiling by creating a 'Customer Bill of Rights'. 

"Under this agreement, profiling and unreasonable searches will be prohibited. ... This move follows several lawsuits accusing stores of profiling minority customers." (Via NY1)

WEEK reports the move also comes after several black shoppers alleged they were racially profiled at both Macy's and Barneys New York.

"It was drafted by the retail council of New York. ... The stores denied they had policies that targeted black customers."

The Christian Science Monitor says the one-page Bill of Rights will be displayed in stores and will also include phone numbers for the New York City Commission on Human Rights. The manager's phone number of the particular store will also be listed. 

"At a news conference Monday, the Rev. Mr. Sharpton said he hopes the signs will go up this week."

MSNBC spoke with Sharpton himself, who says there's still a long way to go, but this is a good start. 

"I think it's the beginning to get the major retailers to at least acknowledge there's a problem."

The Bill of Rights defines profiling as more than just race, and also includes religion, sexual orientation, appearance or physical characteristics.