Discrimination at Shelbyville Store - Dollar General

On August 22, 2016 at approx. Noon, in Shelbyville Indiana, I entered the store to purchase a K-Cup Coffee Maker, two mugs and package of K-Cups. I arrived at the counter and a gentleman rang up the Kurig, it priced at 2.25, and I look at him and stated that’s not right, he replied “no that’s not right let me get my manager to fix it.” Katie came from the back office and began to investigate the box, and stated “Yeah, you can leave now.” I responded confused thinking she was joking, and she repeated herself several times, “Yeah you can leave, I know you did it. Leave the store.”

Confused I asked “Did what?” She explained “you put a different tag on this and tried to purchase it for cheap.” I stated “I did no such thing, I’ve been here less than 5 minutes, and I knew what I came to buy, it says it’s $60 on the shelf, and there are two other cheaper coffee pots I could have selected.” Katie continued to state that I was trying to steal and needed to leave the store, I asked her to review her camera to see that this never occurred and that she was out of line.

I stated, in order for her to come to the counter ask no questions and make these accusations, she was discriminating against me and I wanted the number to corporate. Katie provided me with the number and I began to make the report while in the store by phone.

At this point, Katie began telling the customers behind me in line that I was trying to “STEAL MERCHANDISE.”

While I was on the phone with customer service just outside, Katie stood outside smoking a cigarette and stating to a customer entering the store “that I just got a corporate call on me because I caught this black lady trying to steal.” After the customer went into the store, Katie got on her cell phone and began telling the same story.

I was horrified, that as a business owner in this predominantly white town, I was being treated this way. It was extremely upsetting, and humiliating that Katie would go out of her way to shame me but not to view the camera to see I did not commit the act.

I then received a call from Chris Williams the regional manager, who immediately took up for Katie, and only after I told him that her behavior went well beyond excusable, did he try to back peddle and console me. This company, by giving Katie a slap on the hand, continues to condone racism on rural Indiana. Mr. Williams shocked me that his response was “well Katie usually gets good reviews so this is surprising.”

The appropriate response in customer service is to empathize, answer questions, and provide an alternative way she SHOULD HAVE HANDLED IT, that you will COACH HER TO DO IN THE FUTURE. Disappointedly, Mr. Williams minimized my complaint by ending the call stated I’m sorry this happened BUT I won’t be able to verify anything on the camera until later in the week.

Meanwhile, Katie is free to discriminate and shame me and other in publicly unprofessional rants of accusations without evidence. How comforting.

Dollar General – 2547 E State Rd 44 Shelbyville Indiana 46176

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