Coupon Discount Worked on White Doll, But Not Black Doll

December 20, 2011  |  

What’s the difference between a white Baby Alive doll and a black Baby Alive doll? About $13.That’s what a mother in Georgia found out when she went to her local Toys R Us to try and buy one for Christmas for her seven-year-old daughter.

Niara Taylor went to the Toys R Us determined to come home with one of her daughter’s top Christmas gift wishes. She brought the chosen African American doll and a 20 percent coupon to the register. It came up to about $47, the full price of the doll plus tax. Confused, Taylor went back to look at the dolls and called for a customer service representative. The price tag displayed the sale price of $31.99 and the representative told her that there was no difference between the dolls. Soon a store manager also came to the scene of the baby doll confusion.

“The manager said ‘Yeah, it’s only the Caucasian doll that’s 20 percent off,'” Taylor told her local news station, 11 Alive. “And I said ‘You mean to tell me I have to pay full price for the African-American doll, but they’re all the exact same doll?'”

The manager informed her that this was correct; her coupon would only work if she bought the white doll. Offended, Taylor left the store without the coveted doll in either color. What a blow to all the African American mothers who may have wanted to get a doll that actually looked like their child on that day.

Since the unfortunate incident Taylor called the corporate office and received no response until the story was reported to the local news station. Toys R Us then released a statement detailing that their company policy prices dolls of the same brand equally, regardless of ethnicity. The incident was simply a “pricing error,” and the “result of incorrectly keying in the item number on one of the three like dolls.”

Taylor was also offered a $25 gift card. Although the gift card is not enough to cash to buy the black or the white doll, the loving mother says her daughter will still get the black Baby Alive doll she wanted.

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