Skip to main content

Mall of America store stands by employees who supported protesters

  • Author:
  • Updated:
    Original:

Employees of the Lush Cosmetics store at Mall of America are getting support from their company after they stood in solidarity with the "Black Lives Matter" protesters on Saturday.

Some 3,000 people converged in the rotunda of the mall Saturday afternoon to demonstrate against police brutality in the wake of police killings of two black suspects in other parts of the country.

About a dozen employees at Lush, which is near the rotunda, decided to show their solidarity with the protesters by stepping outside their store and raising their hands.

Their actions sparked a lot of conversation on social media. Comments on the store's Facebook page and Twitter expressed sentiments from consumers on both ends of the spectrum – some were supportive of the employees' actions, while others said they were upset and angry about it.

But the company itself, which is based in London, said it fully supports the employees' actions. In response to a critical comment on Lush's Facebook page, a company representative posted the following:

"While the employees were not acting officially for the company, we are a campaigning company, and we support the right to free speech and peaceful protest. Standing in solidarity of fairness, justice and equality for all, regardless of gender, race, age, sexuality, and religion - this is something that as a business we do wholeheartedly believe in."

The demonstration lasted about 45 minutes, and protesters then moved outside the mall. A small group of protesters stayed inside and 25 of them were later arrested for refusing to leave.

Charges are expected to be filed soon against the organizers of the protest, according to WCCO. They had been warned repeatedly that they faced arrest if they went through with the demonstration because the MOA is private property.

Parts of the mall were on lockdown, and about 80 stores were closed for about two hours on what is normally one of the busiest shopping days of the year. WCCO says mall officials are in the process of determining how much money their tenants lost Saturday because of the protest.

Bloomington City Attorney Sandra Johnson told the station she's building criminal cases against the organizers. She added she will try to force the organizers to pay for the lost mall revenue as well as the cost of the additional law enforcement presence.

Lena K. Gardner of the group “Black Lives Matter” said the protesters did not cause businesses to lose money, according to WCCO.

“We came to sing carols and raise awareness, and the Bloomington police are the ones who shut down the mall, not us," she said.

No injuries or property damage were reported from Saturday’s protest.

Next Up

Redtail Ridge Elementary

Sunbather on the roof triggers shelter-in-place at Savage elementary school

The sunbather told police he was trying to "tan and relax."

Nero

The Raptor Center's ambassador, Nero the turkey vulture, dies at 47

Nero helped save the California condors before taking up his post as an education ambassador.

Ben Leber

Ben Leber named new permanent co-host of 'Twin Cities Live'

The former Minnesota Vikings linebacker was introduced Friday afternoon.

MPR

APM Reports, maker of 'In the Dark' podcast, nixed by Minnesota Public Radio

MPR said "select programming elements" of APM Reports will be incorporated into MPR News.

storm, severe

The latest on holiday weekend severe weather chances for MN

The most significant severe threats are Sunday night and again on Monday.

Arianna Vos

Charges: Driver was drunk, high in head-on crash that killed 19-year-old woman

The young woman killed in the crash was a college student studying zoology.

motorcycle

Motorcyclist killed in Ham Lake after passing in the turn lane

The motorcyclist was hit by a car turning onto the road.

Keith Ellison

Minnesota gets cut of Ford settlement over misleading ads

The $19.2 million settlement centers on Ford's C-Max hybrid and Super Duty pickup truck.

Related