To foster inviting settings and decrease racially-biased experiences for shoppers, U.S. retailers have linked up.

According to a press release sent to AfroTech, the nonprofit Open to All has announced that 28 major retail brands have signed the Mitigate Racial Bias in Retail Charter. What this means is that signees have committed to integrating actions that work to dismantle racially biased interactions while creating a friendly atmosphere for shoppers.

Sephora Study Examining Discriminatory Practices

The charter stemmed from a Racial Bias in Retail Study commissioned by Sephora which examined the discriminatory occurrences in retail felt by Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) shoppers. The findings revealed two in every five shoppers in the U.S. have a first-hand account of unfair treatment due to their race or skin tone. In addition, BIPOC shoppers were three times more likely than their white counterparts to feel scrutinized solely by their appearance.

“At Sephora, diversity, equity, and inclusion have long been core to our mission since our U.S. debut more than 20 years ago – but we recognized that the retail experience has not always been welcoming,” said Jean-André Rougeot, President and CEO, Sephora Americas, according to a press release. “When we first commissioned the Racial Bias in Retail Study in 2019, it was our intent that the findings would serve as useful insights for the entire retail sector, including Sephora.”

He continued: “Today, we are proud to have this work resonate in such a deeply impactful way via the Charter, and with the commitment of so many retail signatories, we can collectively work to change the retail experience on a much faster and broader scale. We celebrate those that have joined and encourage others to sign on, as it’s not about perfection, it’s about a commitment to progress for shoppers today and tomorrow.”

A Commitment To Developing Resources And Education

The study is now a catalyst for change. The charter will work to improve the realities for various shoppers by developing resources and education, which will include training materials and a yearly in-person assembly.

By agreeing to be a part of the charter, signees have recognized unfair and racially driven treatment is prevalent among various demographics. The retailer’s future actions will work to create tangible solutions to better the shopping experience for all.

The Major Retail Brands On The Charter

The U.S. retailers who are a part of the charter are as follows:

  • American Eagle Outfitters, Inc. (American Eagle, Aerie)
  • Ascena Retail Group (Ann Taylor, Lane Bryant, LOFT, Lou & Grey)
  • Ben & Jerry’s, Capri Holdings (Michael Kors, Jimmy Choo, Versace)
  • CarMax, Crocs, DICK’S, GAP, Inc. (Athleta, Banana Republic, Gap, Old Navy)
  • H&M
  • J. Crew Group
  • Levi Strauss & Co.
  • Michaels
  • Movado Group
  • Tapestry (Coach, Kate Spade, Stuart Weitzman)
  • rue 21
  • Zara