Gianvito Rossi Accused of Racial Discrimination

Paola Ditto
Mag 19, 2017

A luxury shoe brand is being sued by a former employee who claims the way her boss spoke about Serena Williams revealed the type of racial discrimination that is commonplace for the company.

The referred to the tennis pro as "disgusting" and 'made it clear that the company did not want African American women to wear its shoes, ' the suit says.

Yesterday, Gianvito Rossi released a statement about the allegations, saying, "Yesterday certain media outlets reported on a complaint filed against Gianvito Rossi by a former employee". They initially refused to offer a discount but eventually caved due to pressure from someone at Vogue magazine, offering only a "fraction" of the discount white celebrities typically receive from the shoe company.

Luxury footwear label Gianvito Rossi is refuting discrimination claims involving tennis star Serena Williams that were made in a lawsuit filed against the company by a former employee of its Manhattan boutique. "Merely lifting words from a complaint out of context, without investigation and without even awaiting any reply in a pending proceeding, is a mere hit job".

Wilburn also claims that she was the only black employee in the company for a year and a half since beginning to work in the Madison Avenue boutique in 2015. "At the appropriate time and in the appropriate context Gianvito Rossi will reply and be vindicated".

An employee at Gianvito Rossi's Manhattan boutique said Mazzilli was unavailable to comment because she's traveling in Italy. Gianvito Rossi will respect that decision and will respond through the legal process.

Wilburn claims her old boss Grace Mazzilli had a "racial animosity toward African Americans", New York Post. "Gianvito Rossi has the pleasure of having relationships with worldwide celebrities without any distinction".

During that time, her suit says Mazzilli was 'hostile to Wilburn based upon her race and age'.

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