A Melbourne IGA store has gone viral after a photo was circulated online of a sign it had on display, instructing employees to ensure there were “minimum 2 staffs in front while we serve Africans.”
The sign, taped to a monitor at checkout, reads, “If an African customer comes to the bottle shop presses [sic] the button for assistant immediately! Minimum 2 staffs in front while we serve Africans.”
The sign had reportedly been on display at the Sunshine West store for three years, but has since been taken down. The manager of the store told the ABC he was sorry for his actions, claiming he put the sign there to remind staff to press the button for help if the store got busy, and shouldn’t have singled out African customers. He said, “I’ve done the wrong thing for the public, we should not do like this.”
A spokesperson for Metcash, which operates IGA supermarkets in Australia, said the sign was “completely unacceptable”. Their statement read, “When we saw the video, we promptly took corrective action with the store in question, including immediate removal of the sign.
“Training for store staff is also underway while we assess the matter to determine what further action is appropriate.”
Chairman of the IGA National Retailer Council, Joseph Romeo, said this type of behaviour was “unacceptable and will not be tolerated in any IGA store across the country”. “As part of our ongoing commitment to supporting local communities across Australia, we are committed to ensuring ALL IGA stores and their employees continue to create a shopping environment where all are welcome and equal.
“IGA retailers across the country are shocked by this event, please be assured that this is a one off case that will be dealt with appropriately.”
The image was originally shared on Snapchat, but went viral after Tiktok user @aliya7_ shared a video of her reacting to the sign, accompanied by the caption, “I mean no one goes there anyways”.
This article first appeared on Over60.