Mom captures video accusing Sesame Place of racism after character ignores two Black girls
Sesame Place has issued two apologies for the incident, but the family says it will continue to investigate after others started sharing videos with similar experiences in the park
A mother posted a video to Instagram alleging a Sesame Place Philadelphia character was displaying racism towards her daughter and niece during a parade in the park in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.
In the video Jodi Brown posted, the character Rosita is shaking her head at her daughter and niece, who are 6-year-old Black girls, after Rosita was seen hugging and high-fiving other children.
Brown told CNN, “Right after the character passed them, there was another little girl next to them who was of a different race and he hugged her. He like, embraced her with his two arms.”
Once Brown posted the video, others started sharing similar videos and experiences at Sesame Place Philadelphia.
This prompted Sesame Place to post an apology statement on Instagram Monday morning, claiming it was a misunderstanding. The post garnered thousands of comments with some users arguing the apology wasn’t enough.
Later in the day on Monday, Sesame Place posted another apology to Instagram that stated:
We sincerely apologize to the family for their experience in our park on Saturday; we know that it’s not ok. We are taking actions to do better. We are committed to making this right. We will conduct training for our employees so they better understand, recognize and deliver an inclusive, equitable and entertaining experience to our guests.
For over 40 years Sesame Place has worked to uphold the values of respect, inclusion and belonging. We are committed to doing a better job making children and families feel special, seen and included when they come to our parks.
Sesame Place invited the family to come back to the park for a meet-and-greet with some of the characters, per NPR.
However, B’Ivory LaMarr, who is representing the family as legal counsel, said he will continue to investigate and does not believe the apology or invitation was enough.
“At this point we’re calling for a genuine, authentic, apology, acknowledging the harm that has been caused in outrageousness of the actions and to do right, to make amends with the damage that’s been caused to these two young girls,” LaMarr told CNN.
According to CNN, Brown and LaMarr are planning to hold a press conference Wednesday on the matter.