A few months ago, we featured the story of a disabled child who was kicked out of Lush Cosmetics in the West Edmonton Mall in Alberta for his inability to wear a mask.
Cade, who was six years old at the time of the incident, is a special needs child. In addition to being non-verbal autistic, he has a rare brain malformation and spastic paraplegia. Cade was being pushed in a stroller by his masked parents when the family was approached by Lush staff at the mall, where they were subsequently kicked out due to alleged mask noncompliance.
On Lush’s website, the company claims to uphold the CDC’s guidelines around masking, which clearly lays out the criteria for mask exemptions. Cade definitely meets that criteria — he even has a formal, doctor notarized mask exemption that his parents offered to show Lush staff!
And let me remind you that this a company that is vehemently opposed to animal cruelty, that apparently fights for animal rights. We guess they’re simultaneously OK with treating actual humans cruelly and ignoring their human rights. Which is even more ironic given that Annabelle Baker, Lush’s U.S. director in charge of the company's “Greater China Strategy”, apparently spoke at the Hong Kong Justice Centre Corporate Change Makers Conference about Lush’s belief in freedom of movement and how it supports human rights in March 2019.
“In terms of a follow up, there was none,” says Cade’s mom, Candice. “I wasn’t expecting anything from them. I’ve seen in the past how they treat people. We’re just one family and to them it doesn’t really affect their bottom line.”
In this follow up, we contacted every single person associated with Lush, from Lush co-founder Mark Constantine, the West Edmonton store specifically, customer care, public relations, and director Mo Constantine.
In an email to the company, we note that others had received similar maltreatment at this specific location.
No one other a U.K. health care advisor, Haley, responded. She said that because we had contacted the Lush U.K. customer care team's email address, that she “wouldn't be able to comment on any of this, nor does she know anything about it unfortunately.”
She then prompted us to get in touch with the Canadian team.
We did that and responded to let her know. We asked for a direct email or phone contact that may give more success; she didn’t respond. We followed up one last time with Haley, asking what the mask policy was like in the U.K.
Her response was that “Lush wouldn't be able to comment on this matter as they are in a different country and all countries had different restrictions, laws and rules when it came to COVID.”
Sounds like settled science! And how’s that for customer service?