Targeted because of race when buying in bulk at supermarket

July 2022

Jasmine* is of Pacific Islander descent. She regularly makes large purchases of groceries for her family at the supermarket.

Jasmine was shopping at her local supermarket when she ordered a large quantity of the same item from the deli. The deli attendant taking her order rudely questioned her, treated her abruptly and then called security to escort her to the checkout to pay for her items. 

Jasmine felt she was being treated like a thief despite not doing anything wrong and that she was targeted because of her race. She was embarrassed and humiliated because other customers in the supermarket were staring at her while she was being escorted to the checkout.

Jasmine lodged a complaint of race discrimination with ADNSW.

The Supermarket did not agree that the actions of its staff were motivated by racism but were because the store had been experiencing stock losses through theft. However, they did agree that the actions of the deli attendant were not appropriate or in accordance with its policies.

The complaint was resolved at a conciliation conference when the Supermarket sincerely acknowledged the embarrassment and humiliation caused to Jasmine.  They agreed to settle the matter by giving Jasmine a written apology, a monetary payment and cultural sensitivity training for supermarket staff. 

Note: Being targeted for surveillance because of your race when shopping, may amount to unlawful discriminatory terms of service. 

*Names have been changed to protect the privacy of the individuals.

Last updated:

10 Aug 2022

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We acknowledge Aboriginal people as the First Nations Peoples of NSW and pay our respects to Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the ongoing connection Aboriginal people have to this land and recognise Aboriginal people as the original custodians of this land.

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