August 4, 2015

IKEADortmund, Germany — A mother of a five-year-old with autism was left outraged after the staff of Ikea’s Dortmund branch in Germany refused to let him in at the establishment’s play area.

Bianca Amanzada was planning to leave her son, Alyschah-Paul, at Ikea’s supervised play area while she shops at the establishment, but the staff at the popular furniture chain apparently refused her son entry at the establishment’s play area upon finding out that he has autism.

Outraged by the staff’s refusal, Amanzada reportedly asked for the store’s supervisor, who later on agreed with his staff and told her that they couldn’t admit Alyschah-Paul to the store’s play area.

Amanzada’s 19-year-old daughter, who was with them at the time of the incident, offered to stay with her brother and look after him in the play area but Ikea staff apparently still refused them entry, and even allegedly told Amanzada that she could “always leave her son in the car.”

Amanzada slammed the furniture chain, accusing them of “debasement, discrimination and marginalization”.

Speaking to The Local, however, Ikea Germany denied ever telling Amanzada that she could leave her son in the car, but admitted that they denied him entry to the store’s play area.

Ikea Germany insisted that the safety of children inside the stores’s play area remain their first priority, and that they reserve the right to refuse entry to those whom they deem at likely to undermine other children’s safety— citing that Amanzada did warn employees about how her son can be aggressive at times. In a statement, the company told:

“Ms Amanzada had already told employees that her son could be aggressive.”

The company apologized for the hurt feelings of those involved in the incident but remained firm about the rules being implemented in the furniture chain.

This is not the first time that Ikea has been criticized for its store policies that virtually prohibit children with special needs from using their stores’ play areas. Earlier this year, a mother in Kansa also slammed Ikea for discriminating against her son, who has autism.

Source: In Hannah Butler Mother slams IKEA for rejecting autistic son 

About the author 

Althea Violeta

Althea is a journalist from the Philippines. She has been writing articles, journals, reviews, and Op-Eds for nearly two decades. She is also a contributor for Poptard Magazine.

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