A nightclub in Charleston, South Carolina has been accused of employing tactics similar to ones used during the Jim Crow era, which prohibits black men and black women from entering the establishment.
According to the Post Courier, Deco Nightclub received almost 200 one-star ratings last week accusing the club of racist practices. Kaitland Paige said the bouncer didn’t allow her entry into the club because she didn’t have a membership card. However, Paige, a black woman, says she saw a white woman get in by simply showing her driver’s license.
A few others took to the club’s Facebook page to express similar experiences.
Deco club owner responded to the criticism on Facebook praising the club’s diversity and inclusion practices.
“We’ve immediately discontinued any type of membership program. All current VIP cards, etc., will no longer be accepted or required as a means of entry for anyone, anytime,” the owner posted. “We have cut ties with employees who are not aligned with our company’s core values of collaboration, communication, and inclusion; and will continue to seek out new employees to better serve you.”
The club has received several five-star ratings, but on Google and Facebook, the comments have been negative. The local Charleston NAACP chapter reportedly hasn’t received a formal complaint.
“We look forward to continuing the dialogue in real time through our social channels and on our website,” Deco Club posted online. “As always, we encourage your feedback on how we can continue to improve your experience here at Deco.”
Deco’s attorney David Aylor doubled down on the owner’s comments and stated some of the former’s employees allowed friends inside without adhering to policy.
“At times, we have had to limit the number of people we can legally allow in the club due to various regulations including occupancy requirements by the fire marshal. It appears we have had employees allow their friends to enter the club despite not adhering to our dress codes. Since we have received some complaints, our managers have had to terminate some employees who did not follow our policies or who were not respectful to our customers.”