Retailer H&M pulls fashion headdresses from Canadian stores after complaints
Published Friday, August 9, 2013 10:05AM CST
Last Updated Friday, August 9, 2013 6:03PM CST
Complaints have prompted retailer H&M to pull faux-feather headdresses from its Canadian stores.
A week ago, Kim Wheeler, an Ojibwa-Mohawk woman from Winnipeg, was in Vancouver, B.C. when she spotted the headdress being sold in an H&M store.
“They’re worn by chiefs. They’re a sign of honour and respect and leadership. They’re not a cute accessory to be worn in a nightclub,” said Wheeler. “It's not something you take lightly and throw on your head and wear to the bar or a concert.”
She emailed the company, asking for the items to be pulled from shelves.
The company issued a statement.
“We always want to listen to our customers and their feedback, our intention was never to offend anyone or to be insensitive. We chose to remove the headdress inspired accessory from our shelves. This was a limited edition item that was sold in 5 of the 62 locations we operate in Canada,” said Emily Scarlett, H&M spokesperson.
CTV did find a headdress still being sold in Vancouver Friday morning.The company doesn't currently have stores in Winnipeg.
Some Winnipeggers who spoke to CTV said headdresses shouldn’t be treated as ornamental and should be respected.
Wheeler said she’s glad H&M reacted to her note.
The spokesperson for the company said she’s not aware of complaints about the headdresses at H&M stores in other countries and couldn’t comment on whether they may also pull the accessories outside of Canada.
The spokesperson said the company received three complaints about the headdresses and quickly made the decision to remove them from the Canadian market.
- with a report from Karen Rocznik and files from The Canadian Press