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The store where a delegate was the target of racism had a code to alert employees about ‘suspicious’ customers, witnesses point out

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RIO – The Zara store in Fortaleza, where a black delegate was barred from entering last month, had a beep code that alerted employees to entering “suspicious” customers at the location who would need to be watched. This information came from witnesses during an investigation by the civil police of Ceará, which indicted the Portuguese Bruno Filipe Simões Antônio, 32, as a manager, for the crime of racism committed against Ana Paula Barroso on September 14. .

According to the portal of the “Diário do Nordeste”, the delegate Sérgio Pereira said that current and former employees of the store testified that the warning “Zara zerou” was emitted over loudspeakers when people “non-standard »Entered the establishment. The rule was, according to witnesses, for blacks who would be “badly dressed”. Two former employees also reported episodes of bullying.

“From then on, this person was accompanied by employees, not to be assisted, but in this situation of uninterrupted surveillance. Because she left the customer profile and started to be treated as a suspicious profile, ”Pereira said.

Among those interviewed by investigators is a 27-year-old black woman, who reported on social media that she had experienced a similar situation at the end of June of this year in the same store.

In a statement, Zara said that it is “a company which does not tolerate any type of discrimination and for which diversity, multiculturalism and respect are values ​​inherent and inseparable from the corporate culture”.

The images analyzed by the Forensic Investigation of the State of Ceará (Pefoce) and by the Police Intelligence Department (DIP) of the PC-CE demonstrate the discriminatory attitude of the accused. The internal circuit of the store shows the differential treatment accorded to the victim. In the video it is possible to see when she is being kicked out, and a few minutes earlier the same employee attended to a customer who was not wearing the mask properly. Other similar situations were filmed, in which white clients were not approached to properly use the mask.

To gain access to the visual material, it was necessary to comply with a search warrant and seizure of the store’s electronic material, which took place on September 19. The warrant was requested by the civilian police after the store refused to provide the material, as according to a Zara employee an assessment from the store’s legal department would be required and only after this analysis would a feedback be given on availability. the recordings made by the cameras.

The Secretariat of Public Security and Social Defense of the State of Ceará (SSPDS / CE) stressed that the conduct of the director fell under Article 5 of the Racial Crimes Act – for having “refused, prevented the ‘access to commercial establishments, refused to serve, serve or receive client or buyer’, with a prison sentence of one to three years.

As for the store, the police indicated that it could be held civilly responsible for moral damage, since in article 932, paragraph III of the Civil Code, it is stated that “the employer or the principal, by their employees, is responsible for civil compensation, servants and agents, in the performance of the work for which they are responsible or because of it ”.

The investigations were carried out by a collective of delegates from the Police Station for the Defense of Women (DDM) of Fortaleza, and details of the police work were disclosed on Tuesday at the headquarters of the Civil Police Superintendency, in the center of Fortaleza. , during a press conference.

Read Zara’s note on the case below:

“Zara Brasil, who did not have access to the report from the police authority until its publication in the media, means that he will work with the authorities to clarify that the performance of the store during the Covid pandemic- 19 is based on the application of health protection protocols, since the government decree in force establishes the compulsory wearing of masks in public places. Any other interpretation not only deviates from reality but does not reflect company policy either. races and ethnicities, gender identities, sexual orientation, religion and culture Zara is a company which does not tolerate any type of discrimination and for which diversity, multiculturalism and respect are values ​​inherent and inseparable from the corporate culture. any form of racism, which must be combated with the utmost seriousness in all its aspects ”.

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