Apple Inc. CEO Tim Cook issued an official statement forwarded to all Apple employees regarding the incident that took place in Australia.
The unfortunate event involved a group of high school students of Somalian and Sudanese origin, who were asked to leave their local Apple Store from the respective employees. The latter justified the reason of their action as precautionary measures to prevent the kids from potentially stealing any item from the store.
After they were barged out, the five students -that were dressed in their school uniforms as well- came back with the school’s principal to ask for an apology from the employees involved.
The event quickly become subject of criticism from the world media, many of which called the Cupertino giant as ‘racist’, sparking a major controversy concerning the American giant’s ethics.
As aforementioned, Tim Cook talked about the event, claiming in a straight forward manner that his company is not racist, on the contrary, it is open to diversity, and that is serving people from all walks of life; regardless of their financial situation, origin or religion.
In addition to resolving the issue, Cupertino’s CEO stated that, in response to the particular incident, he will initiate retraining programs for its managers at Apple Stores all around the globe.
It is worth noting though that, despite retraining being a logical inference to respond to the issue at hand, it does not mean that it will resolve it as well, as training cannot train out racism. The personnel’s views responsible for the event will be maintained, what will change is the subtlety while applying them. So ultimately, Apple Inc. should face the problem in a more serious and less fixed manner.
Furthermore, the company’s annual diversity report claims improvement compared to previous years, though there are still glaring indications pointing towards the preference of Caucasian and Asian employes. The papers that were released in August also mentioned that 11% of the total workforce in the US is Hispanic, while African-Americans accounted for solely 8% of the workforce.
Tim Cook’s complete email was originally obtained and published by BuzzFeed News.