Accusations of racism are sadly nothing new for the fashion retailer Zara. First the clothing items the retailer made and sold were ‚Äúculturally insensitive‚ÄĚ. Now the brand is just plain racist.

The Center for Popular Democracy recently conducted a survey and found that Zara not only shows racial bias toward customers, but toward its own employees as well. More than 250 Zara employees were given the survey during their scheduled breaks at stores across New York City. The results of the survey revealed that not all things are equal between the whites, blacks and Hispanic employees.

It should be noted that Zara claims they were not contacted in regards to the survey. Apparently the surveys were given to store employees in the stores on a regularly scheduled work break -all without the company realizing it was happening.

Racism in Zara

‚ÄúFindings reveal that both race and skin color play a role in the treatment of employees and customers.‚ÄĚ The report summarizes the results of the survey rather succinctly but goes on to explain, ‚ÄúLighter-skinned workers of color and white employees tend to have higher status assignments, more work hours, and a stronger likelihood of being promoted."

It‚Äôs not just employees who are allegedly targeted in a negative way in Zara. Apparently store personnel are also trained to target ‚Äúsuspicious-looking‚ÄĚ customers. A special code is used for these ‚Äúsuspicious‚ÄĚ individuals and apparently most ‚Äúspecial order‚ÄĚ customers are black.

One darker-skinned employee showed up in a hoodie to grab his paycheck and other employees labeled him as ‚Äúsuspicious.‚ÄĚ In fact, he was labeled ‚Äúspecial order‚ÄĚ and even detained in the store as he walked through on his way to the back office where he was to pick-up his check.

Denials from Zara

Understandably Zara has fought back against the label of racism, pointing out that roughly half of their recently promoted employees were minorities and that half of the scheduled store hours are allocated to minorities as well.

In fact, Zara went as far as to release an official statement ‚Äúvehemently refuting‚ÄĚ the survey, which they claim was done with ‚Äúulterior motives and not because of any actual discrimination or mistreatment.‚ÄĚ They go on to say that Zara is an equal opportunity employer with ‚Äúmultiple avenues‚ÄĚ for employees to raise concerns or dissatisfaction. Apparently Zara is a ‚Äúglobal multicultural company serving valued customers across 88 countries, and do not tolerate discrimination of any form.‚ÄĚ

The Real Customer Experiences

While Zara may be right about the lack of racism in their company, we have seen plenty of negative reviews from real customers on PissedConsumer about the quality of the merchandise as well as the customer service they have experienced in the store. Neither has been impressive according to the reviews left on this site. In fact, one PissedConsumer reviewer¬†went so far as to claim, ‚ÄúI think Zara is pretty much known for poor customer service. Not only are the store employees typically rude and dismissive, but the corporate customer service is just as bad.‚ÄĚ


Zara Reviews: