I sent this letter of complaint to Dollar Tree Corporate offices 3 weeks ago and of this writing still have yet to hear an official reply from Dollar Tree representatives...I have done further research on Dollar Tree and I found that Dollar Tree promotes a culture of racial discrimination among its employees and customers alike...My incident and other incidents related with this brand shows that Dollar Tree does not respect nor acknowledges the full humanity of Black people...Although we are the largest consumer demographic in the North America market we still as a collective and as individuals deal with the disrespect and inhumanity inherent from a system still operating on the residue and fumes of white supremacy...
The fact that it took public outrage, protest and political pressure to get Dollar Tree to do the right thing to pay the surviving young son of Dollar Tree employee and hate crime victim Taneka Talley her full employee compensation benefits shows that Dollar Tree is indifferent to the suffering and plight of Black folks who have contributed heftily to their multibillion dollar annual earnings...(On March 29,2006, 26 year old Taneka Talley was killed at random at a Dollar Tree store in Fairfield, CA, by a White man,Tommy Joe Thompson, who vowed to killed the first Black person he encountered that day...At first, Dollar Tree denied paying her son her full employee compensation benefits because their insurance company The Hartford Group, which benefited generously from the institutional sins of slavery, refused to pay out because they said that the killer and Ms. Talley had "a personal connection" based on the nature of the crime which forfeited them honoring the claim...Read more:
Eventually, on October 14, 2009, former California Gov. Schwarzenegger signed the Taneka Talley Bill (AB 1093) into law. This law makes it illegal to deny claims on the basis of a perpetrator’s motives when an employee is injured and/or killed on the job.
For more Taneka Talley news please access the following link:
What We Need To Do...
With that said I am asking conscious people of color as well as decent life and justice loving folks everywhere to channel the spirit and courageousness of the Montgomery Bus Boycott, the brave students who sat-in at the Woolworth lunch counters and MLK's last speech (often called the Mountain Top speech where he talked about protesting or boycotting those businesses that will take Black folks dollars but won't hire and treat Black folks with the respect that we deserve) to boycott the entire Dollar Tree chain and brand...
Feel free to also contact Dollar Tree's corporate offices and tell them how you feel too...Power concedes nothing without a demand...Here's the link:
I refuse to support any business or organization that does not respect me as a man and as a human being...This time it was me the next time it may be you so let's get together to stop this madness for all time...One heart.
My original letter:
Racist Incident At Dollar Tree Store #3871
Dollar Tree Inc.:
The incident I am describing below took place at the following store location:
Centennial Commons - Store #3871
7686 Polo Grounds Blvd.
Memphis, TN 38125
“A gentleman will not insult me, and no man not a gentleman can insult me.”
“Find out just what any people will quietly submit to and you have the exact measure of the injustice and wrong which will be imposed on them.”
“Power concedes nothing without a demand. It never did and it never will.” ~Frederick Douglass
On Friday evening April 13, 2011, I was treated like a sub-human 2nd class citizen and degenerate by your store manager “J.” (that was the name I was given by one of the employees)…I was talking to one of his employees, Stephan (this was the name of the employee given to me by one of the employees), whose brother was also talking to him while he was performing his duties which were placing items neatly in the aisle as well as collecting items that were out of place and putting them in his collection basket. This employee has always been the utmost respectful in regards to the customer, always with a ready smile and a kind word or gesture that could make anyone feel welcome and quick to smile. Stephan was asking me and his brother about some advice on a personal matter…Even a lady customer who heard us cheering him up and saw the sincere gestures of Stephan offer some useful advice which he definitely took to heart…Mind you Stephan was still faithfully performing his duties moving us along as he went down the aisle…
No one around was disturbed by our conversation except for J. the manager…After he decided that he had enough of us, J. goes to us and tells Stephan and us in his own arrogant way that he doesn’t like our conversation and that he wants us to break it up and for Stephan to get back to work. My words cannot fully express or captured the tone and mean spiritedness of what he actually did and the very offensive way in which he said it…However, everybody who heard his loud outburst stopped what they were doing and looked just as shocked and perplexed as we were about the whole scenario…I looked at the manager as he walked away and remained silent to gain some clarity on what had just transpired. I then spoke loudly but respectfully and asked him if he realized that he is talking to customers this way and he replied that he didn’t care if we were customers. Stephan feeling truly bad about what happened began to apologize on behalf of his manager, but I told him his apology wasn’t needed because his boss is an asshole and you should never apologize for another person being an asshole…There was a way that J. the manager could have handled this situation which would have been respectful and agreeable to all parties involved but he chose to use his assumed position of power to bully and to try to emasculate his employee and patrons of the store…I also put down what I was going to buy, quickly left and vowed to boycott Dollar Tree…I have been shopping at that particular store ever since it opened in 2009 and have spent a lot of dollars there…I will not spend one red cent there again…I have already told family members and friends about the incident and they are also following my lead…
J. the manager is a racist, he has no respect or appreciation for Black people let alone those who are in his employ and does not see Black people as equals to him…What he told three young Black males directly he was actually telling other Black folks indirectly: you may shop and spend lots of money here but you will never be respected as a customer or as a person by me…What makes it more detrimental and searing is that you have this small-minded racist person representing your brand at the local level which truly reflects poorly on the Dollar Tree brand overall.
I want this situation quickly remedied and I look forward to hearing back from Dollar Tree Inc. If I don’t get a reply and a satisfactory solution I will look at other options at my disposal. Thanks in advance for your consideration.
Ronald Herd II
P.O. Box 752062
Memphis, TN 38175