Self-harm scars? No alcohol for you!

Have you heard about this?

21-year old, Becci Wain, was at Tesco, buying alcohol for a friend’s birthday party, when the cashier refused to sell her the alcohol because of her self harm scars. According to this cashier it was the company’s policy to not serve people with scars. (WHAT?!) The instance was quickly cleared up since Tesco has no such policy and apologies have been made and accepted.

Check out the Independent article Wain wrote about her experience: “When Tesco refused to serve me because of my self-harm scars, I was devastated – but it’s society’s fault, not theirs”

This is one of my worst fears. Other articles show Wain’s scars and I can admit that in comparison no one would notice my scars unless they were directly looking closely at my arm so the odds of someone blatantly pointing them out are extremely small. Still, the fear is there. I am amazed at Wain’s attitude toward what happened, that she can acknowledge how painful it was and that it will not hold her back!

I do lay blame on the cashier though. We need to be held responsible for what we do and say. I feel, when we say these discriminatory things happen because of “stigma” or “society” we are removing ourselves from the problem. We can’t do that. We are society and we are stigma. In order to change the stigma and society we need to change ourselves. We do that by taking responsbility for our discriminatory thoughts and actions. It is our responsibility to unlearn discrimination.


9 thoughts on “Self-harm scars? No alcohol for you!

  1. There are always people who hold themselves up as judge, jury and implementer of justice as they see it. Tesco Cashier sounds like one of them. No doubt thinking she was being righteous and will go to her grave thinking it.
    What is so aggravating about these people is that they rarely have any real knowledge or experience in the thing they are judging and condemning.

  2. Yea, I’m with you in placing blame on the employee. Even if she was told that was company policy (which she very well might have been by a manager or supervisor, in which case I also place blame on them), the way she handled it–declaring it loudly in front of other customers–was just awful. I work at the office or a company which also does retail sales on-site, and if a situation like this ever happened the sales rep and supervisor involved would both be sent to sensitivity training, if not let go completely. Customers should always be made to feel welcome and appreciated, and even if such a policy existed it should be handled discreetly so as not to make the customer feel uncomfortable or attacked. And using false policy as a reason to refuse a customer service? That would not fly, period. Even ignoring the blatant discrimination (and that’s what it was, even if it was meant to be helpful; “the road to hell…” they say), that’s just shitty business practice.

    • I know! I can’t imagine ever getting away with such poor customer service at my work! I wish I knew what was going on in that cashiers mind and at the same time their justification would probably make me feel a little bit sick.

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