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Woman sues Bloomingdale's, says employee criticized her for buying men's shirt

August 23, 2011 | 12:30 pm

Bloomingdales

A Los Angeles County woman has filed suit against Bloomingdale's, accusing the upscale department store chain of discriminating against her when she tried to purchase a men's suit to wear to her wedding.

In the lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court on Friday, Rebecca Peterson-Fisher said she went to the Bloomingdale's store at Westfield Century City a year ago to shop for an outfit for her upcoming wedding.

Peterson-Fisher said she entered the menswear department and was approached by salesman Alvin English, who allegedly asked her who she was buying the shirt for and then refused to take her measurements.

"After some further offensive comments, English asked, 'Why are you buying a man's shirt anyway? You're a woman,'" the lawsuit said. "When told that was none of his business, he said, 'You're a woman; you shouldn't wear men's clothing!' He then turned his back to her and stalked away."

The lawsuit said Peterson-Fisher asked for the store associate's supervisor and began crying near the jewelry counter. She said she hasn't been able to enter Bloomingdale's again, despite the store's offer of a free shirt.

The suit, which also names English and Bloomingdale's parent Macy's Inc., accuses English of "deliberately and intentionally [refusing] to provide full and equal accommodations, advantages, facilities, privileges and services to plaintiff because of her actual or perceived sex or sexual orientation" and is asking for a jury trial and damages.

Jim Sluzewski, a spokesman for Macy's Inc., said the company doesn't comment on pending litigation.

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-- Andrea Chang

Photo: Bloomingdale's in Century City. Credit: Los Angeles Times

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