Marks & Spencer staff member ‘racially abused mum of two’ as police investigate

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Police in Essex are investigating an alleged incident of hate crimes after a customer in a local branch of Marks & Spencer claimed she was racially harassed by staff.

Faryaal Hussain has claimed two female members of staff at her local branch in Basildon followed her into a car park and subjected her to racist abuse.

The mother-of-two claimed the offensive incident took place following an argument in the store over the queuing system.

Marks & Spencer have responded to the accusation to state they are taking the allegations “extremely seriously”, while Essex Police have also confirmed an investigation is underway.

The BBC report that cops were called to Mayflower Retail Park on Gardiners Link in Basildon on Friday 7 August at approximately 1pm.

The police were responding to reports of a woman in her 30s who claimed she had been harassed.

Faryaal claims a member of staff told her while she was queuing in the star with her mother: "The queue's over there, can you not read?"

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She then alleges that the same member of staff approached her outside in the car park and said: "People like you can't read."

The alleged victim also claimed she asked the employee for their name and warned she would speak to the manager before the incident in the car park.

Faryaal told the BBC: "As we were walking to our car, they were also walking with us. They were both going on and on.

"I'm shocked and hurt that in the 21st Century people still have this mentality.

"I moved to Essex from London less than two years ago for a quieter life to raise my children, but since I've been here I've had the most racial discrimination, and it makes me wonder if it's because I wear a headscarf."

Marks & Spencer have said in a statement: "We take all allegations extremely seriously and we are currently investigating the situation."

While Essex Police have confirmed they are investigating the incident and are making an appeal for witnesses to come forward.

A spokesperson told Daily Star Online: "We were called just before 1.10pm on Friday 7 August with reports of harassment at Mayflower Retail Park, Basildon.

"It was reported a woman in her 30s was subjected to racial harassment when leaving a store by two women.

"The first was described as in her 50s, with blonde hair tied back and glasses."

They went on: "The second was described in her late teens or early 20s, black hair pulled back and slim.

"Both women left in a grey Citron.

"We believe a man and a woman both witnessed the event and spoke to the victim after encouraging her to report the incident to us and would ask them to please call us on 101."

They added: "If anyone else saw what happened to please call us or report it online quoting crime reference 42/122296/20."

  • Marks and Spencer
  • Crime

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