Retail Chain Under Fire After Teen Claims She Was Ousted For Being 'Too Big'

Dan Fastenberg
Retail Chain Under Fire After Teen Claims She Was Ousted For Being 'Too Big'

Discrimination against the obese is well-known and well-documented. But if you work in retail, you know that treating customers with respect is a vital part of the job. So it created an uproar when a 14-year old Eugene, Oregon girl named Shelby Buster claimed she'd been kicked out of a major retail chain, told she was "too big" to shop there.

On Saturday, her actual birthday, Buster says she was shopping with a friend for perfume at a Eugene outlet of rue21, the casual clothing and accessories chain, when a worker told her to leave the store. "You're too big to be in this store, I need you to leave," Buster claims she was told, as was first reported by the local ABC outlet, KEZI.

After Buster's friend finishing her shopping, the two left and found Buster's mother, Marge Wood-Buster, who was waiting for them at the food court. After hearing what happened, Wood-Buster returned to the store to confront the store's managers. On the spot, one of the store's employees apologized, according to Buster, as was reported by the Daily Mail.

But it was the first time Buster had shopped without a parent at her side, and she was upset. After returning home, she posted her story on rue21's Facebook page:

"Well 'Happy Birthday' to me! The rue 21 [sic.] in Eugene Oregon told me I was too fat and told me to leave the store! I can't believe it! Thanks for ruining my birthday rue 21 [sic.] !"

In speaking to KEZI, a rue21 regional manager said the company doesn't tolerate discrimination against overweight customers. The company, which has more than 900 locations nationwide, regularly offers clothing in extra large sizes. The regional manager, not named by KEZI, told the outlet the company is reviewing the video footage from the store before making a final decision about the fate of the employee.