Sephora to close all 400 US stores on June 5 for 'inclusion workshops' in wake of SZA's racial profiling in a California store
Sephora has said that it will be closing all 400 of its stores in the US on the morning of June 5 to host "inclusion workshops" for its employees. Apart from the 400 stores, Sephora's distribution centers and corporate offices in the US will also shut down, as per reports.
The make-up brand, which has about 706 locations in the US including 386 boutiques in JC Penney stores, made this move after the cosmetics company caught itself being painted in the wrong light in the internet's eye. This was because singer SZA said she had security called on her while shopping at a California store, reported Daily Mail.
Following the unfortunate incident, Sephora posted notice of the closures on its social media page and elsewhere, asking fans of the beauty store to join them in their commitment to a more inclusive beauty community. It also included a link to its We Belong to Something Beautiful campaign.
The campaign poster from the French brand that hosts over 300 beauty brands, read: "We will never stop building a community where diversity is expected, self-expression is honored, all are welcomed, and you are included. These values have always been at the heart of Sephora, and we’re excited to welcome everyone when we reopen."
Sephora's troubles began when SZA, whose real name is Solána Imani Rowe, tweeted that a Sephora employee called security to make sure she wasn't stealing. She wrote, "Lmao Sandy Sephora location 614 Calabasas called security to make sure I wasn’t stealing," later adding "Can a b***h cop her fenty in peace er whut."
To salvage the situation, the singer, later on, received a message of support and a Fenty gift card from the owner of the company she was trying to support, fellow singer Rihanna. "Go buy yo Fenty Beauty in peace sis! One love — Rihanna," the note read.
Sephora too responded with an apologetic tweet, saying it takes such complaints seriously.
They wrote back, "You are a part of the Sephora family, and we are committed to ensuring every member of our community feels welcome and included at our stores."
The beauty brand's latest move follows in the footsteps of coffee-giant Starbucks, which closed 8,000 stores for anti-bias training last May.
Starbucks initiated the training after the company came under fire after a Philadelphia store called the police on two black men who didn't buy anything. According to reports, Nike and Papa John's have also made similar moves in the past for their stores and employees.
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