This beautiful Brisbane boy in a typewriter T-shirt was denied entry to an electronics store because "Down Syndrome people look the same". James Milne's sister Victoria told the story on Facebook: "I have never been so disgusted and mad in my life. Today at JB Hi-Fi Mount Ommaney, when my dad and my brother (who has Down Syndrome) entered the store the security guard immediately stepped in front of my brother and said that he wasn't allowed in the store. My dad, confused, asked 'Why not?' and the security guard said that he had my brother's photo and he wasn't allowed in. My dad asked to see the manager and while he is being called, the security guard goes through his phone to find a photo of the young man that they think is my brother. When my dad and the manager are shown a photo of a white male who also had Down Syndrome, my dad says it's clearly not James, who has olive skin, and the manager replied 'Well they look the same'. Despite the evidence that my brother had been mistaken for another young man, the manager still refused to let him in. By this stage James, the sweetest boy who is still in love with The Wiggles and Ben 10, was visibly upset at what was happening and my dad took him home. Mum called up the manager of the store, demanding that he apologise to her son, to which he replied that 'He would never, ever, ever get an apology' from him and that he had 'the right to stop anyone he pleased from entering the store'. Please, if you are also disgusted by the discrimination shown to James, share this and take a stand against bullying and ignorance."
Outrageous. I hope this incident draws as much fire online as the incident in India where a cop smashed an old street typist's typewriter.
Outrageous. I posted a link to your article on Twitter, and if it's OK I'd like to put a translation on my blog.
Would it be possible to obtain an email address for JB management to whom complaints could be sent about the Brisbane store and its manager, or perhaps a Facebook page?
Dear Ted, Richard, Taylor, Miguel and Baubuch
Thank you all for your comments.
Yes, Miguel, please go ahead with your plans, if you haven't already done so.
It strikes me this store manager seems to have got away with this lightly.
There doesn't appear to have been any developments since I wrote this. At that time, James' sister's Facebook post "naming and shaming" JB Hi-Fi, had had 161,000 likes, 39,000 comments and 94,000 shares.
JB Hi-Fi's national management (CEO Richard Murray) had apologised to the Milnes, but as far I know, the Brisbane manager had not, and I'm not aware of any action taken against the Brisbane management and staff.
Full statement from JB Hi-Fi:
JB Hi-Fi is committed to providing all customers with the best possible shopping experience.
We have investigated the incident involving James Milne and his family at our Mount Ommaney store.
We apologise to James and his family for any distress he has suffered as a result of this incident.
JB Hi-Fi and the manager of our Mount Ommaney store believe that we could have managed this in a better way in the interests of James and his family.
JB Hi-Fi is committed to learning from this and improving our customer experience across all of our stores.
To support this we are reviewing our customer policies to make sure that they reflect best practice.
Richard Murray CEO of JB Hi-Fi said “We would like to apologise unreservedly to James. We should have done better yesterday. We are going to make sure that we learn from this and do better in the future. I have sent a personal letter of apology to James and we are continuing to endeavour to contact the family to apologise directly.”
Baubuch, the details are:
Mt Ommaney JB Hi-Fi
Address: Tenancy 67, 171 Dandenong Road,
Mt Ommaney, QLD, 4074
Phone: (07) 3026 5300
JB Hi-Fi Group Pty Ltd
Attn: Customer Feedback Officer
PO Box 561
Chadstone Centre VIC 3148
If you go to the store's website you will find a way of contacting it by emnil to make a complaint. Go to:
Sam says that JBHIFI need to up their game and their awareness for disability and minority groups. Richard Murray is full of it, and so are the stores - there is a nasty anti disability vein running right through JBHIFI, and they will not be able to get away with it for much longer.
Richard Murray is pretending he cares about disability when he couldn't care less. If a CEO really believes what he say's he does, then he wouldbn't have such a poisonous culture within his stores. His staff are anti disability, and uneducated with how oppressed people from minority group are, and have been in society over the years.
The movement has shifted these days and people and business is changing - Richard Murray is pretending he is on board but he's not. Just go into any JBHIFI and have a chat with the Manager - you'll see what I mean
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