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Teen suspended from job for having braids sues company

PICTURED: Destiny Tomkins (Photo credit: Facebook)

TEENAGER DESTINY Tompkins is taking Banana Republic to court after she says a store manager deemed her braids “too urban.”

According to TMZ, she is filing a racial discrimination lawsuit against the Gap Inc.-owned chain for at least $1 million. The corporate office, store and regional managers are listed as defendants in the suit.

Tompkins, who was hired as a sales person in a White Plains, New York store, started wearing braids soon after she began working. According to documents obtained by TMZ on Monday (Nov 13), the manager — a white man who Tompkins identified as Michael on Facebook in October — told her that her hair was “too urban” and “unkempt” and didn’t fit BR’s image.

The 19-year-old took the descriptions as Michael meaning the braids were “too Black” and she says after she refused to change her hair, she was removed from the work schedule. And although she wasn’t formally given the pink slip, she was also never assigned any shifts.

On Wednesday, Oct. 4, Tompkins detailed her situation on Facebook, saying that Michael told her to use shea butter on her hair rather than keep her braids installed.

The retailer told the outlet they wouldn’t “comment on pending litigation.” They also reiterated they have a zero tolerance policy for discrimination and harassment.

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