Macy’s Refuses to Hire Army Vet Because of Military Background

Twenty-one year old Afghanistan veteran Kayla Reyes, was recently denied employment by Macy’s, a mid-range to upscale chain of department stores. The reason? Reyes wouldn’t know how to interact with customers because of her recent time serving in Afghanistan. 

The person interviewing Reyes stated that if a customer were to get in her face on the sales floor, Reyes wouldn’t know how to deal with it. She went on to say that because she spent time in Afghanistan she wouldn’t know how to interact with customers. Instead, she explained that a loss-prevention position might better suit Reyes and her experience. 

Reyes took her frustration to social media and her story went viral. 

Macy’s corporate got wind of the situation and released a public statement: “Our commitment to veterans is strong, as we recognize that veterans possess leadership skills that we find are essential in a dynamic department store environment.” Shortly after the Vice President of Macy’s, Inc. released the statement, Reyes says a representative from the company reached out to her and offered her a job.

Reyes respectfully declined and decided to take a job elsewhere. She claimed that she didn’t want to work for a company that only offered her a position after being publicly shamed. 

Discrimination against employees and potential employees because of their military service or status is illegal in California. Yet unfortunately, such discrimination is prevalent. Do you think Macy’s did enough to try and remedy the situation? Do you see discrimination against military veterans in the workplace? 

photo by larryzou on Flickr

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