July 2, 2020 | News | No Comments
NORTH KINGSTOWN, RI — A landmark Rhode Island business drew controversy over the weekend after ending its discount for police and military members and announcing it will donate proceeds to social justice organizations.
“We’re fed up,” the company wrote in a message on Instagram. “Until local police take action to solve problems with racism and injustice, Allie’s Donuts will stand choose to stand with the people of our great state.”
The post sparked strong reactions, both in support of and against the company.
“To my Rhode Island peeps, I like how everyone is so UP IN ARMS about Allie’s donuts taking away their Military/Police discount, but weren’t that outraged about systematic racism in our institutions and a black person being murdered by a cop,” one person wrote on Twitter.
“Congratulations Allie’s on widening the hate gap and on your continued support from your ignorant customers,” another person said. “I used to be a happy customer….but you lost this one!”
“Why do people think police and military are owed a discount to begin with?” another person wrote on Facebook. “Why are they more important than a doctor or nurse or the mechanic that makes sure all their vehicles are running in perfect condition? I was in the military and I’ve never even asked about a discount. Not then and not now. No one deserves to pay less for the same product being sold to everyone else at full price!”
On Sunday, the company doubled down, saying that while they “stand by their statement,” they apologized to anyone who was insulted.
“Reflecting on our method of delivery, we imagine most of you were surprised by our candor,” the statement said. “We feel comfortable, as a business with such wonderful customers that have respected and adored our products for more than 50 years, to say that we stand by our statement. It’s time to recognize the voices and stand with our fellow black and brown Rhode Islanders, who want to be treated equally.”
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The company went on to ask all Rhode Islanders to “take action with us … [and] find ways to end systematic racism everywhere in our communities.”