Anthropologie is responding to a storm of outrage from customers, celebrities and former employees after the clothing retailer was accused of racially profiling customers at its stores.
The Urban Outfitters-owned retailer issued a statement Thursday addressing allegations that employees were told to use the codename "Nick" to refer to black shoppers in stores.
"Regarding allegations of racial profiling, we have never and will never have a code word based on a customer's race or ethnicity," the company said in a statement posted to its Instagram account.
Anthropologie did not immediately return a FOX Business request for comment.
But social media users who claimed to have witnessed the discriminatory practice called the company out, accusing Anthropologie of lying.
"I literally worked in your flagship store in NYC and was instructed to use this phrase. Not a surprise that you would blatantly lie but still a bummer now that you’d like to be considered woke," a user commented.
Actress Emmy Rossum also demanded Anthropologie and fellow Urban Outfitters-owned store Free People issue an apology, calling the alleged racial profiling "disgusting" in a Twitter post on Wednesday. The 33-year-old star said she regrets wearing the brand's apparel calling out its "stupid bralettes" she wore on the Showtime series "Shameless."
The backlash started earlier this month when Anthropologie posted a quote from Maya Angelou to its Instagram account saying that people were “equal in value no matter their color” amid support for the Black Lives Matter movement. However, commenters immediately called out the company's alleged discriminatory workplace conduct.
"Anthro's culture needs to be seriously reformed," one social media user commented, adding: "The 'Nick' codeword for Black shoppers that has been corroborated by unrelated former employees? Come on."
A separate user commented: "I literally worked in your flagship store in NYC and was instructed to use this phrase. Not a surprise that you would blatantly lie but still a bummer now that you’d like to be considered woke."
The company earlier this week pledged to donate $100,000 to the United Negro College Fund and said it would expand its diversity efforts across its workforce.
The clothing store is the latest to face company backlash for alleged discriminatory workplace practices. Customers are urging Nordstrom to cut ties with Reformation and stop selling its products at department stores after the company was accused of exhibiting racial behavior against workers at stores and in its corporate offices. Nordstrom said on its Instagram account that it "does not tolerate discrimination of any kind that extends to our partners."