- By Mehmet Andalusi
Apple employees in Australia apologized Wednesday to a group of black students who were told to leave one of the company’s stores in Melbourne because of fears they “might steal something.” The apology was not a public apology, and was only given after the schoolboys’ principle went into the store to complain.
Apple has not yet taken any action against the store manager or security staff, bringing an ironic sting to their slogan “Think Different”
“These guys are just a bit worried about your presence in our store,” an employee at the Apple store in a Melbourne suburb told the group, according to a video of the incident, which happened Tuesday.
The video, which one of the students later posted on Facebook, showed the employee speaking outside the store to the students while a member of the store’s security team looked on.
“They are just worried you might steal something,” the employee said.
“Why would we steal something?” asked one of the teenagers.
“End of discussion,” the Apple employee said. “I need to ask you to leave our store.”
The episode happened on Tuesday afternoon in Highpoint Shopping Centre in Maribyrnong, a suburb of Melbourne.
Asked about the incident, Apple confirmed the apology and said it had looked into details of the matter.
“Inclusion and diversity are among Apple’s core values,” the statement said. “We believe in equality for everyone, regardless of race, age, gender, gender identity, ethnicity, religion or sexual orientation. That applies throughout our company, around the world with no exceptions.”
Yet, no action has been taken and no public apology or formal public enquiry has yet been made.
The boys took the incident well commenting “It was clear racial discrimination and profiling, but they apologized, that’s the end of the matter” However one of the boys commented on facebook that he was disappointing to see no public action on the matter by Apple, a sentiment echoed around the world by an increasing number of unhappy customers.
The excuse they might be thieves, when dressed in school uniform, in a store that keeps all of the working, valuable models locked, and non-activated in a tightly secured back store facility seems extremely far fetched. It would be almost impossible to steal, activate and register anything from an Apple store. Without activation and registration Apple devices are virtually useless, and there for worthless.