Two days after Zendaya explained a racist incident that took place between her and a store clerk, Vons grocery responded. The Disney Channel actress said on Snapchat that a cashier looked at her as if she “couldn’t afford” $400 in gift cards based on her skin tone.
“I recall her not trying to help us at all, saying that we couldn’t buy the gift cards, and then throwing my wallet,” Zendaya said.
“This is what we deal with…” Zendaya said with her male friend quickly adding, “because we’re Black.”
Though the actress shared a store manager eventually helped her make the purchase, Von’s policy – listed on their website – has some stipulations. For credit card purchases, customers can only buy four gift cards, or $200 per day. With a debit card, there is more wiggle room. Customers have a 20 gift card limit or $2,000 each day unless authorized by a store director.
The chain issued a statement to People magazine acknowledging the policy and that Zendaya could buy gift cards up to their limit.
“At Vons, we strive to treat each and every customer with the utmost respect. There is a policy that limits gift card purchases using a credit card. Zendaya was able to purchase gift cards up to our limit, and we apologize for any inconvenience or misunderstanding.”
The company continued, “We respect Zendaya’s voice in the community and similarly are committed to diversity and inclusion. Moreover, we understand that race is a sensitive issue in America and view this experience as a reminder that every interaction is an opportunity to treat each customer as we ourselves would like to be treated.”
The actress experienced another racial incident in Hollywood last year. “Fashion Police” panelist Giuliana Rancic blasted Zendaya’s faux locs she sported at the Oscar’s.
“I feel like she smells like patchouli oil and weed,” she remarked.
Zendaya schooled Rancic on Instagram, discussing the many powerful Black figures who donned the hairstyle.