Sunday, May 9, 2010

AM Grace Meng Wants Explanation for Allegations That Apple Store Employees are Discriminating Against Chinese by Rich Shapiro - NY Daily News

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The Apple store in SoHo. M. Roberts for News

A Queens assemblywoman is demanding an explanation from Apple over allegations that employees at its SoHo store are discriminating against Chinese people.

Grace Meng (D-Flushing) fired off a letter to the tech giant after she was approached by a handful of disgruntled customers claiming Apple staffers denied them iPads, demanded to see their passports or asked inappropriate questions.

"One person was asked why they wanted one since their English was not so good," Meng said. "I want to get an explanation."

An Apple spokesperson declined to comment.

A 33-year-old Queens man told the Daily News a SoHo worker initially told him the store was out of iPads. The man, who asked to remain anonymous, said when he asked an Asian staffer, she found one for him. The man said a manager later asked him if he was planning to buy the iPad and resell it. "I'm just so upset," the man said. "This is racial profiling."

Meng said she suspects Apple is concerned about Chinese people selling the gadgets in their homeland.