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Students Win A&F Discrimination Case
New University (UC Irvine)
November 29, 2004
Abercrombie & Fitch, one of the nation’s largest clothing retailers, settled a $40 million race and discrimination class action lawsuit on Nov. 16 with lawyers on behalf of 16 named plaintiffs representing African-Americans, Hispanics and Asian-Americans. Among the 16 were three UCI students and one alumna, Jennifer Lu, who claims to be satisfied with the settlement.
Lu graduated from UCI in fall of 2003 with a B.A. in criminology, law and society. She worked at the A&F store in the Crystal Court location of South Coast Plaza from September 2000 to February 2003. Lu enjoyed working at the store but was unexpectedly laid off after a corporate representative made a visit to that location in January 2003. Less than a week following the visit from the corporate representative, Lu and four other Asian-American employees were laid off.
“We were told that the store didn’t need so many people after Christmas, so they going to have layoffs,’” Lu said. “It just happened to be all the Asians. But within a week, A&F hired five more sales representatives to replace us. I couldn’t believe it.” Lu said she was later told by one of the store managers that, “The corporate representative told the senior store manager that, ‘You need to have more staff that look like this,’ pointing to an Abercrombie poster. It was a Caucasian model.” To learn more, click here.