NEW YORK — Barneys New York and Shawn “Jay Z” Carter said theyare committed to launching the BNY SCC Gallery and Collection forholiday and have increased the percentage they will donate to the ShawnCarter Foundation, which provides educational opportunities to youngpeople facing socioeconomic hardship.
Under the new plan, 100percent of all sales from the BNY SCC Collection will benefit thefoundation; originally, 25 percent of sales were to go to thefoundation. In addition, on Wednesday, when the collection launches atBarneys — with design partners such as Balenciaga, Balmain, Lanvin,Proenza Schouler and Rick Owens — it will donate 10 percent of allretail sales from Barneys stores in the US and barneys.com, with aguarantee of raising at least $1 million.
Last month, Jay Z drewwidespread criticism for collaborating with the retailer after twoAfrican-American customers were detained by the New York PoliceDepartment after making expensive purchases at the store. Jay Z said hewas going forward with the collection, provided he is given a“leadership role” in addressing racial profiling issues.
In astatement posted on his Web site, Jay Z wrote, “While I await thefindings of the Attorney General’s office, I have agreed to move forwardwith the launch of BNY SCC collection under the condition that I have aleadership role and seat on a council specifically convened to dealwith the issue of racial profiling. I am in a unique position to use myvoice to affect change to this disturbing issue. The easy position wouldhave been to walk away and leave policy making to others hoping thatsomeone addresses the problem. I will not leave the outcome to others. Iwill take this into my own hands with full power to recommend, reviewand revise policies and guidelines moving forward. I am choosing to takethis head on.”
He said that his team has been privy to the status of the Barneys third-party consultant’s investigation and hasalso contacted the attorney general’s office about the status of itsinvestigation into both Barneys and Macy’s, where other alleged racialprofiling incidents have occurred. “These findings are not yetavailable,” he said.
Barneys said, “Barneys New York has zerotolerance for any form of discrimination. While all of ourinvestigations have been consistent in finding that no Barneys New Yorkemployee was involved in either of the deplorable situations concerningTrayon Christian and Kayla Phillips, an issue exists in our industry,and we intend to be part of the solution. As we have stated all along,if we learn any procedures or practices are not consistent with ourzero-tolerance policy, we will immediately take corrective actionincluding terminating those employees responsible.”
Barneys saidit has worked closely with Rev. Al Sharpton; Marc Morial, chiefexecutive officer of the National Urban League, and other communityleaders to address these issues.
“Moving forward, Mr. Carter’s leadership in this process will further strengthen the industry’sability to ensure that anyone who walks into a retail establishment is treated equally and with respect,” said Barneys. “We welcome Mr.Carter’s input and recommendations to our future policies andguidelines.”
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