Famous Footwear / Rude associate who discriminates
I went to a Famous Footwear in Ohio. I was visiting from out of state. I attempted to purchase a pair of child's shoes for 31.00. I wrote a check and it came back "declined" to my surprise, as I've never had a check decline and I had just written a check at Kohl's that same day with no problems whatsoever.
She tried to ring it again and it declined. I told her that maybe it was declining because I'm from out of state, I had no idea. I told her don't worry about it and I gave her my Visa debit card--I've been with this credit union for years and recently I got a new card and it's not like the old cards--the name and numbers are flatly printed on the card.
The associate looked at the card, then looked at me stonefaced and said, "I'm not swiping this card, it looks suspicious."
I was taken aback and told her that this card is VERY legitimate, she had my state ID as well with the card.
Associate: Do you have another form of payment, because I am not swiping that card. I have never seen a card like that and I don't want my name attached to it.
Me: So you wont even TRY to swipe my card??? There are zillions of credit cards in the world and just because YOU have never seen one like this, doesn't mean it does not exist!
Associate: What??? What are you you trying to say? That I live in a bubble?
Me: I don't know where you live, but it's a valid card. There is the eagle hologram and everything on this card and you have my ID with the card.
Associate: THAT IS NOT FAIR! YOU DON'T KNOW ME TO SAY THAT I LIVE IN A BUBBLE AND DON'T KNOW ANYTHING!
I told her I don't know where she lived or whatever, but my card is valid and I want her to swipe it.
Associate: I will swipe it, but only as a debit, I won't do it as a credit.
Me: Fine with me!
She swipes the card, I put my PIN number in---APPROVED.
I think it's over, but it's not.
She continues to berate me, telling me she didn't like the tone I talked to her in and if I wasn't doing anything wrong, why did I get shaky and upset!
I told her I got shaky and upset, because I don't like being accused of being a credit card criminal, when I did nothing wrong!!!
After she kept talking garbage AFTER the transaction was complete, I had enough. I didn't want the the shoes at this point. It was the principle of the matter now.
Me: Forget it. I've had it with you. Credit my account. I don't want the shoes now.
Associate: NO! I will not credit the account! LEAVE THE STORE!!!
Me: I will not leave the store until you credit my account!
Associate: Fine. She grabs the phone and calls the police department!
Associate on the phone with the police:
"I have a woman who will not leave the store." Pause
"African American" I then say "HA!"
She takes the phone from her ear and says, "I didn't tell them, they asked me your race!!!".
She gets back on the phone and says "okay" and hangs up.
Me: I used to work at the police department in Indiana. Let them come.
We go back and forth, me arguing YOU ARE GOING TO CREDIT MY ACCOUNT. After arguing with me, she then relents and does it.
Soon as I sign the return receipt, here comes TWO POLICE CARS.
The cop enters the store and she says, "OFFICER, ESCORT THIS WOMAN OUT THE STORE!!!".
We walk outside and I tell him how absurd this is and I didn't appreciate being accused of something, when I did nothing wrong. The officer tells me they have a right to turn down something that looks suspicious. ((whatever)))
The cop apologized and asked me for my ID. He took my information and as I was leaving, I look inside and she is in there LAUGHING and SMILING with both cops!!
So who do you think will win in this situation?
A young, white blond shoe clerk?
Or a 43-year-old college edcuated Black woman with ZERO criminal history?
I do NOT appreciate being treated the way I was, it was humiliating and I while that shoe clerk laughed and thought it was funny to send the police to the store for NOTHING, I won't rest until she is either fired or seriously reprimanded. What happened to me was wrong, point blank. I never used one expletive or was threatening to her.
Basically, I was a Black woman who intelligently held her own ground to that store and the police. I will never, ever step foot in that store again and I have forwarded my experience to corporate, with a letter detailing what happened and a letter from my credit union who were appalled that I was treated in this manner with their new "flat face" cards.
If you are black, be careful shopping in Cuyahoga Falls! I'm still reeling a week later from what I went through.
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