Kirstie Alley slammed Abercrombie & Fitch CEO Mike Jeffries for his remarks that his company doesn’t want overweight employees or customers.
The Abercrombie & Fitch controversy arose last week when a company analyst noted that Mike Jeffries seemed to discriminate against larger customers, women in particular. While the store carries extra large men’s sizes, women’s sizes only go up to large. The store does not carry any sizes above 10.
This led people to dredge up a 2006 Salon interview, where Mike Jeffries admits he doesn’t want fat people to shop at his stores, either as employees or customers.
“That’s why we hire good-looking people in our stores,” Jeffries said. “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 added: “In every school there are the cool and popular kids, and then there are the not-so-cool kids. Candidly, we go after the cool kids. We go after the attractive all-American kid with a great attitude and a lot of friends. A lot of people don’t belong [in our clothes], and they can’t belong. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely.”
Mike Jeffries has been punished for the strategy in the past, settling a $40 million class-action lawsuit in 2004 alleging that Abercrombie & Fitch stores had a nearly all-white staff. Now Jeffries is taking a beating in the court of public opinion.
Kirstie Alley slammed Jeffries and the company for the backward approach.
“Abercrombie clothes are for people who are cool and look a certain way and are beautiful and are thin’ and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah,” Alley told Entertainment Tonight. “That would make me never buy anything from Abercrombie.”
Kirstie Alley isn’t the only one who slams Mike Jeffries. A filmmaker this week created FitchTheHomeless, a project in which he distributed Abercrombie & Fitch clothes to homeless people on L.A.’s Skid Row.