Here we go again. A white CVS worker further proves that living while Black in America continues to be a hard thing to do after a Black woman recorded an encounter that mirrors so many others.
Kendriana Washington was trying to pick up a prescription at a Tulsa, Oklahoma, CVS Pharmacy on Monday when her bank card was not going through. She assured CVS associates she had enough money as she had used her card at a grocery story earlier. After one associate had no luck, another employee only identified as Debbie came over to try to put the card through, but it still did not work. Washington asked if she could come in to have the card put through a different register, Debbie rebuffed her saying she did not have enough money.
Washington then went into the store and was able to get money from an ATM. When she showed Debbie that she indeed had the amount needed, Debbie asked for the help of another associate only identified as Tanya. Tanya began apologizing, but Washington was not having it after being accused of not being able to pay. That is when Tanya began to tell her she did not like her tone and threatened to call the police.
In the video, Tanya can be seen standing at a distance with the phone to her ear. Washington can be heard saying in the video “this woman is calling the police on me when I have cash and I’ve asked her several times to process my payment. She’s calling the police because she doesn’t like the tone of my voice. They messed up my prescription three times.”
Washington accused Tanya of trying to play victim as Tanya claimed to the 911 operator that she was “refusing to hear her out.” She also tried to say Washington was yelling at the “top of her voice,” which Washington denied. After hanging up with authorities, Tanya then told Washington that she “forfeited” her right to be helped and that police would arrive to escort her from the store.
Finally, Debbie intervenes and processes Washington’s payment, which literally took two seconds. Washington also recorded their interaction with Debbie expressing that this situation would not have happened if she were not Black. Debbie then tried to tell her she has Black friends, so that does not make her racist. Washington gather her together quick saying, “what does you having Black friends have to do with me? No, having Black friends does not mean you are not racist.”
CVS replied to the thread of videos on Twitter, claiming they do not tolerate the behavior exhibited by the white woman.
“We do not tolerate any practices that discriminate against any of our customers, and we take your experience very seriously. Could you please send us a DM with your phone number and full name so that we can pass this along to our team to further assist?” CVS wrote.
Washington spoke with district leader Amanda Dixon on Tuesday and called the conversation “unfortunate. She said Dixon made it clear she was trying to help Debbie keep her job by telling her she has known her for 20 years. She also reflected on the conversation on an Instagram post where she urged white folks to stop calling the police on Black people.