Rev. Jesse Jackson is lending his hand in the controversy with Sesame Place, which arose after various Black families accused the theme park of discriminating against their children.
According to TMZ, Jackson wrote a letter to Sesame Place and SeaWorld, to which the theme park’s characters are licensed, expressing the need for change to happen following the social media backlash. The letter reportedly suggests that Sesame Place Philadelphia bring more Black people on staff and hire an African-American firm to host bias training.
Sesame Place, which is owned by SeaWorld has not provided solutions that I trust will eradicate the culture that had stained this theme park with discriminatory practices. We need SeaWorld to take a stance against past practices and do what is necessary to end discriminatory acts at their theme parks.”
As we previously reported, many families have come together to file a class action lawsuit alleging Sesame Place employees intentionally ignored Black children during parades at the park. The initial video showed an employee dressed as Rosita shaking her head “no” at two young Black girls who asked for a hug, and proceeding to hug other non-Black children at the parade.
Rev. Jesse Jackson continued to condemn the park, and compared the alleged incidents to excessive force used by police on black people.
When I saw the now-vrial video shared by Jodi Brown, I was shocked but unfortunately not surprised. We have watched discrimination in the form of excessive force by the police, just as we have seen wrongful hiring practices, but to see discrimination against out innocent children is a line that we cannot allow the enemies of progress to think that they can cross. We must collectively let SeaWorld and other companies know that we will not accept racism against anyone and certainly not our innocent children.”
A family from Baltimore filed an additional discrimination lawsuit against Sesame Place, and are seeking $25 million from the theme park.
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