Last month, a black driver working for a local Lowe’s in Danville, Virginia, was on his way to deliver a package when he received an abrupt order from his manager to return a shipment back to the store.
“I asked him why I couldn’t do it and he said because you’re black and they don’t want you at the house,” Marcus Bradley told WSET-TV.
With his longtime coworker Alex Brooks riding in the truck’s passenger seat, the two returned to work. When they arrived, Brooks told the station, a white driver replaced Bradley. Brooks says he refused to complete the delivery with him.
“It was one of those things like, ‘These guys will get over it. They’re tough guys, they’re delivery guys.’ And that’s kind of where I just had to put my foot down and say I couldn’t do it with them,” Brooks says.
When WSET tracked down the Lowe’s customer, she saw nothing wrong with her demands. “I got a right to have whatever I want and that’s it,” she said.
Lowe’s corporate has since terminated the manager who bowed to the racist request. As for Bradley, he returned to work the next day.
“I mean I gotta work,” he said. “I’m going to keep going to work like I’ve always done. But I would think Lowe’s would take it into consideration to think about what they’re doing next time.”
“We’ve reached out to the drivers and one of our senior executives went to the store to apologize to them in person,” a spokesperson told the Washington Post. “We have zero tolerance for discrimination of any kind, and we should never have accepted the terms of the sale with the individuals who were delivered to.”
It’s unclear if Bradley’s manager personally sympathized with the customer’s outrageous demands. But Lowe’s corporate may want to beef up its basic training with the message to managers that the customer is not always right.