Sobeys must pay Andrella David $21K for racial discrimination
Sobeys employee publicly called shopper a 'shoplifter' but produced no evidence
An independent human rights board of inquiry has ruled that Andrella David, the Nova Scotia woman who was racially profiled while shopping at a Tantallon Sobeys in 2009, will receive $21,000 from the company.
The decision came late Thursday. It also mandates that Sobeys Group Inc. provide a written apology to David and that the company participate in Human Rights' Commission-approved training related to racial profiling and discrimination.
Marion Hill, board chairwoman of the inquiry, ruled in October that David had been discriminated against on the basis of her race by the company.
Low-quality video led to accusation
In 2009, David was stopped by Sobeys employee Jennie Barnhill in front of other customers and accused of being a "known shoplifter in the store" based on surveillance footage.
David was waiting in line to buy ice cream at the time. David asked Barnhill to show her the footage.
Upon seeing the footage, David told Barnhill, "If you think that's me, you must think all black people look alike."
In the October decision, Hill said that the surveillance footage was too poor quality to identify anyone, that there was no indication that David had ever attempted to shoplift, and that racial profiling had been a factor in how David was treated.
Sobeys has appealed the board's decision, prompting protests by hundreds of community members at the Tantallon Sobeys in March.
That appeal had been adjourned until the decision on remedy was reached. The appeal process will resume on May 11.