The Maribyrnong College students uploaded video of the incident to Facebook and some people accused the Melbourne store of racially profiling its customers
Apple has apologized after a staff member at one of its Victorian stores kicked out a group of black students over fears they “might steal something”.
The company experienced a backlash after the year 10 Maribyrnong College students uploaded video of the incident on Facebook, in which the staff member can be heard saying: “These guys [security guards] are just a bit worried about your presence in our store. They’re just worried you might steal something.”
The students look taken aback at the suggestion, with one responding: “Why would we steal something?”. Many people on social media accused the store of racially profiling its customers.
Initially, Apple Australia refused to comment on the incident. But on Friday morning, Apple issued a statement from its head office in the US.
“We’ve looked into the details of the situation and we apologise to the customers involved,” the statement said.
“We will continue to do everything in our power to ensure all our customers are treated the way they should be. We believe in equality for everyone, regardless of race, age, gender, gender identity, ethnicity, religion or sexual orientation.
“That applies throughout our company, around the world with no exceptions.”
The manager of the store also apologized to the students on Tuesday, after their school principal accompanied the boys back to the shopping center following the incident to seek an explanation.
Watch footage of the incident, as posted online, below.