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Outright rude; hostile demeanor and cruel attitude and terrible customer service
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WEST HARTFORD, CONNECTICUT -- From. Ms. Calderon To: Customer Relations Re: Gymboree Date:12/30/11

I was shopping at the West Hartford Gymboree for my grand children. I boughted 4 items. At the time of paying (4 items)the cashier, Erin-I believe, took as payment my check No 105, Peoples's United Bank, for the amount of $ 51.03. Erin then asked me for my driver license. She anotated information on my check and processed it. Then in front multitude of public she told me that my check declined (twice). I was shocked hearing that. I couldn't believe it, because I have enough of money in my account. I respectfully asked her to please dial the processing center or/and my bank, she refused twice saying, "No Mame I can't do that." Then I asked her to let me use her phone so I could call the Bank myself. I asked her to do that because I wanted to prove that it was a mistake. She refused. Then I gave her another check from Sovereign Bank (check No 101). This new check did not have my name labeled on the check. She refused to take it. On the mean time there was lot of people waiting on a line and looking at scene like I was a perpetrator. Lsstly, I had to give her my credit, debit, card and paid with that account. Then after I got off the line I called the Bank (People's) and had Cristine (Bank Staff)on the phone. I didn't see Erin anymore so I asked another woman (employee, one that was looking at me meanly), to please ask Erin to see me because I had the Bank teller on the phone to clarify the incident since I had plenty of funds on my account. So she can see that I was not misleading anyone. This other meanly looking female said to me "No mame." she is not gona see you, because we don't accept personal checks with no name. I try to tell her that it was about the people's Bank check that we wanted to clarify because the banker said it is impossible to believe that I was advise that my check was declined. Then this woman, Amy, was looking at me in a condescending manner and was shouting about Sovereign Bank but I was talking about People's Bank. She was not lestening. She made up her mind that I was probably a fraudulent customer because my skin was dark and I am Latino look. She loudly accused me that Erin never processed People's Bank check. She embarrasssed me, humilliated me and created a hostile environment for me. She shouted at me in front of customers, "lady you have to leave the store now." I left disappointed and embarrasssed. Cristine, the Banker heard it all because she was on the phone with me. Cristine told me that she heard the whole thing the way I was treated by Amy and she advised me to file a complaint and she would witness. Then I got home and I only had three items in my bag and I was charged for four items. They were bussy giving me a hard time that they did not include all the items in my bag.
Yesterday, I went to claim and bring back one of the items. The attendant told me she couldn't give me a credit to my account because I didn't have my receipt. She told me that Amy advised her.
I spent gas to drive back and forth which cost me money and I was offended-outrighly, therefore, I am asking for remedy. I was targeted and profiled as a non-trustable Latino.
I had a relationship with this store for many years. I am a teacher and honorable. I also have Gymboree credit card. However, I was treated as a criminal and finally told to leave the store for no good reason. Amy was mean, cruel, rude, unprofessional on 12/24/11 late afternoon. She had no right to Shout at me. I am not violent. I am a teacher, a reputable citizen and I also a community advocate.
I need you to please pay me for the expenses incurred do to this incident and terrible customer service experience that ruin my day.

Please respond to my email
Ms. Calderon

Ms. Calderon 860-985-4142
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Anonymous on 12/31/2011:
If your check declines, the cashier is not at fault. They do not see why it declines. They do not decline checks to be mean. It doesn't matter how much money you have in your account. The cashier doesn't make the decision to decline a check. Checks are run through a system and that system determines if the check is valid or not. The second check had no name on it. Again, they were not declining payment to be mean. Most places don't take checks without a name and address on it. When you brought the items back, you did not include the receipt. Again, this was nothing personal. Most stores need the receipt for returns or exchanges. This whole experience had absolutely nothing to do with your race or skin color.
clutzycook on 12/31/2011:
Another thing is that a lot of stores these days will not take a check numbered less than a certain number (usually 500 or 1000), and I have never seen a business take starter checks. And if you didn't have a receipt, odds are they aren't going to accept a return. This has nothing to do with being Latino.
spiderman2 on 12/31/2011:
Let me clarify this for you, as a business owner. We don't take checks from new accounts. Check number 105 means it is your 5th check from the account, hence it is a new account. Then, you pull out starter check (with no name or address) from another account. There is no way any business is taking that check. Now, we don't use a check clearing service, we use common sense. Two new checking accounts, one customer. I don't care what color your skin is, it is a risk to take a check off of an account that has just been opened, much less when the person has two accounts that have just been opened. If you have a freshly opened checking account, you had better have cash or a debit card. You can also do what I did when I opened up a new account and start your checks at 500. However, if a check clearing company is being used, they are not going to approve a check from an account with no history. Merchants don't care about the color of your skin but the color of your money.
jktshff1 on 12/31/2011:
Question, why did you not used your debit/credit card or your Gymboree card? I haven't wrote a check for something in years.
trmn8r on 12/31/2011:
It sounds like both the checks that you used were for new accounts, which is likely the root cause of the problem. I don't believe this had anything to do with race, but everything to do with not being able to cash your check or verify it over the phone. Maybe they don't do it that way.

I'm not saying you deserved suspicion, but after having one new check declined, presenting a second from a different bank may have made them more and not less suspicious of possible fraud.

I'm sorry this got so ugly.
Cwazychicken on 01/01/2012:
Maybe your checks are new and some places require a certain number on a check to cash? I know some places won't take a check number that's less than 2000. And some won't take a check that's less than 500. I know I once tried to cash a check and was told no because they did not know if I would have the account long and it was when I was I think at less than 200 on checks. Most places will not take a check with no name on it. Its just their policy. Anyone could open a new checking account and try to fraud people, so they have to be cautious. I never use checks unless I have to. Perhaps next time, if you have the funds in your bank, take them out with your debit card and buy it with cash. Less hassle.

As for no receipt, I would not expect a store to take a return without proof that you purchased it. Unfortunately, people try to scam stores by returning old things instead of new things into boxes (my dad did that with a Nintendo years ago, he would do it constantly so I was told...he would bring in damaged stuff for new...half of it wasn't what was purchased to begin with, nobody checked then....people like that are why these rules take place. Also people could return products they did not buy at that store, or want to return the items, get the cash and then dispute the charge from the credit card....not that it would be easy to do but I'm sure theres a lot of ways people try to fraud people. Those are some of the reasons why stores have to have these policies.
Venice09 on 01/02/2012:
These are all excellent and helpful responses. There's nothing else to say. I hope the OP sees this.
madconsumer on 01/02/2012:
sounds like a horrible ordeal!!

thank you for posting.

very helpful review!
Fufu487 on 01/04/2012:
all comments given here lead to good reason why your cheques may have been refused. I don't understand, however, why you felt the need to go back to the cash and try and straighten things out with the cashier. Your cheque was declined, there was nothing she could do. If she was sent on break, it's not her responsibility to come down and hear your story. I feel like you were also taking up the replacing cashiers time while she was serving people.
Mrs. B on 08/29/2012:
I have to say although every comment here does a great job of rationalizing the check's decline, no one acknowledged the customer's feelings. And the customer is always right. She shouldn't be made to feel embarrassed or passed over and the lack of empathy shown on this thread is also apparent. The customer even says that she really wanted to prove her funds were legit because of how low the incident made her feel. That made me sad to hear.

It is better customer service to appease the customer and have them feeling good about their shopping experience and wouldn't you want them to continue being loyal to your brand, product and service?

Ms. Calderon, I totally understand where you are coming from and regret that you were treated so poorly.
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Bullied Into Quitting!!!
Posted by on
CINCINNATI, OHIO -- I have worked in children's clothing for over 5 years now. I started out at The Children's Place and loved it. The company is great, and the morale and genuine concern for everyone is real. Well I recently relocated to a new state and was hired in as a part time manager for Gymboree. I was so excited. The store manager who hired me ended up moving shortly after I came in and a new manager was relocated to our store. She was a part time manager just like me, at a nearby store that we consistently got complaints about. (Cleanliness, helpfulness etc.) As soon as the new manager came in, things didn't seem right between us. Shortly after that, I was so excited to find out the my fiancee and myself had finally conceived. I decided to tell my boss first, because I was getting sick a lot and not feeling too well.

I wanted her to know that I wasn't slacking or being lazy. Shortly after I told her this, she brought in our district manager. They took me to the back and basically bullied me into quitting. They told me if I didn't quit they would be forced to write me up for being late. ( I clocked in 3 minutes late that day. I got there and ran to bathroom and threw up. I clocked in as soon as I was done, being three minutes late.) Then they also said they would have to write me up for an earlier incident of missing a managers meeting I wasn't properly informed of. I talked to the new manager the day of the meeting and she failed to mention the meeting at all to me.

Every explanation I gave of my loyalty and service to the brand was not good enough. If I mentioned having excellent customer relationships I was told that was not my job, that was a salespersons job. So I would describe the hard tasking jobs and standards I had for the store and myself while I was there, and was told I needed to be focused on customers. They were looking for a way to get me out of there as soon as I informed them that I was pregnant. Unfortunately I was dumbfounded at the time they were bullying me into resigning, if I hadn't been I would have let them fire me. Then at least I could go to someone higher up who matters and do something about getting fired for being pregnant.

I gave my all to that company and thoroughly enjoyed working there. I will not shop there or recommend anyone give there business to them. I have never been treated and made to feel so inadequate in all my years of working.
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Anonymous on 11/28/2008:
It's against Fedral and State laws what they are doing to you. You have rights and you need to use them. And congrats on the new baby!
old fart on 11/28/2008:
I know that you probably have a legit gripe but it's probably easier to find a new job than it is to pursue a case against these turdballs...I don't know when the little one is due, but it probably is just as well for the time to be off work anyway what with the morning sickness and all..
Good luck to you and the new soon to be arrival..
madconsumer on 11/28/2008:
contact the local labor board, and seek the advice of a labor lawyer. they will know the laws in your state.
Anonymous on 11/29/2008:
I would file a case against them, not because anything will probably come of it for you, but it will be a mark against them for the next employee they force out. Eventually they will get theirs.
Let it go. You've got being a mother to look forward to.
twosides on 06/11/2013:
I bet you should think in your heart and in yourself - do I want to say the truth or just make myself feel better. No lies -
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