M&S ALLOWS MUSLIM CHECKOUT STAFF TO REFUSE SERVING CUSTOMERS BUYING PORK OR ALCOHOL – Customers at Marks and Spencer (M&S) are furious to learn that the retailing giant is to allow all Muslim staff at checkouts to refuse to serve any customer wanting to purchase either pork or alcohol due to their religious beliefs.
It is a move where customers are now threatening to boycott M&S stores as they feel this is a step too far in demanding our tolerance of those intolerant of our cultural and religious beliefs.
Yesterday bosses at an M&S London store told Muslim workers they could politely ask customers to use another checkout, wait for another member of staff or leave the items behind.
One customer told reporters that he attempted to buy a bottle of champagne for the Christmas festivities but was told by the lady at the checkout that she could not serve or sell the items; he was told to wait until another member of staff was available to serve him.
Marks and Spencer was quick to back-track yesterday stating that such advice had been given in error and it was not consistent with it’s national policy.
Yesterday customers took to the M&S Facebook page and lambasted the firm and a ‘Boycott M&S’ Facebook page was quickly created where it received a notable number of supporters.
One individual wrote on the MailOnline stating that his family would no longer purchase any goods from M&S as this ‘one rule system’ was simply creating further divisions and hatred within communities across Britain.
The MailOnline reported to have over 1,500 people commenting on the situation with many stating that they would boycott M&S due to it bowing down to Muslim beliefs and as such alienating the majority of Christian and non-religious customers.
Yesterday, both Tesco and Sainsbury’s were quick to respond to Marks and Spencer’s decision by stating there are no logical or religious reasons why Muslims cannot handle or sell either pork or alcohol.
Asda took things one step further in their statement by declaring it would not allow Muslim staff to take up positions on any checkout if they objected to selling such items.
Morrisons, however took an entirely different approach stating that they would respect anyone’s decision not to handle produce that they find offensive for either religious or cultural reasons.
It was suggested by the former Bishop of Rochester Dr. Michael Nazir-Ali, that supermarkets that do not put up signage to state that a particular checkout does not serve certain products would ultimately cause embarrassment and humiliation for customers.
M&S Public Relations’ arm yesterday went into overdrive in order to diffuse the situation by stating that customer service is their priority and that they work closely with ethnic staff to ensure they are not placed in roles that might contravene their religious or cultural beliefs and do not affect overall customer service.
Many of the comments again raise questions on the intolerance of those from minority religious and cultural backgrounds. The census appears to be that if we are to create cohesive multicultural communities then tolerance of one another must be a two-way street; Britain is not an Islamic state and therefore it’s religion or laws have no place or relevance within British society.