An official watchdog group in France is accusing Abercrombie & Fitch of discriminatory hiring practices.
The group, Defenseur des Droits, says it suspects people hired as models to entice customers at the front of Abercrombie's stores may also work as sales staff, Reuters reports.
It claims Abercrombie hires based on appearance, a discriminatory practice, according to Reuters.
"Though physical appearance may legitimately be a key and determining professional factor for models, that's not so for sales staff," watchdog leader Dominique Baudis said in a statement in Reuters.
Abercrombie has long been criticized for its hiring practices.
A class action lawsuit was filed against Abercrombie & Fitch in 2003. The lawsuit alleged that the company discriminated against minority applicants because they didn't fit the retailer's look.
The company eventually agreed to pay $40 million to applicants and overhaul its practices.
But in 2006, CEO Michael Jeffries admitted in an interview with Salon that he only wanted beautiful people working at his stores because the business was based on sex appeal.
“It’s almost everything. That’s why we hire good-looking people in our stores. Because good-looking people attract other good-looking people, and we want to market to cool, good-looking people. We don’t market to anyone other than that,” Jeffries said.
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