Rite Aid simply ain’t right. A reader sent in this image from one of the pharmacy’s New York City locations (on Sixth Avenue at West 13th Street) and, as you can see, it’s not the most welcoming message.
This isn’t the first time Rite-Aid has found itself in a queer controversy. A DC-based manager came under fire last year after booting an “overly affectionate” gay couple.
The best part of this sign, we think, is mention of “anything that would make our customers uncomfortable is prohibited in the store.” We suppose manager Tom Marquez didn’t consider the gay customers in that one, huh? Someone else must have, because the sign, which appeared around 7am on Sunday, was soon removed…
And, just for your reference, here are Rite Aid’s corporate numbers and the number for Mr. Marquez’s location: 212-727-3720. Do with that what you will…
Update: Rite Aid insists that the alleged manager doesn’t work there and the sign was of their making.
Update again! The original reader just wrote in and said not only were there four signs at the Rite Aid in question, but offers this queer detail: …”When I called yesterday to complain the woman at the Rite Aid told me that Tom Marquez wasn’t the store manager but the manager for the whole area. so I don’t think it’s a phony name…I think he’s definitely a real person. In the audio link the store employee doesn’t say she doesn’t know who Tom is, she only says he doesn’t work in that store. He’s probably regional management, but maybe someone put it up and just used his name.”
Final Update (We Hope!) A concerned and peppy Rite Aid spokeswoman just gave us a call to inform us that neither Tom Marquez nor any other Rite Aid employee had anything to do with the lamentable sign. She also told us that the sign’s message “doesn’t represent the views of Rite Aid or their employees.” The police have been contacted and they’re trying to track down the culprit, who Rite Aid hopes will be prosecuted to “the fullest extent of the law” for this “vandalism.” The spokeswoman also used the word “appalled” to describe her and her peers’ feelings about the alleged homophobia. Thanks for the clarification, Rite Aid!