The controversial topic, so it was almost obvious that the CEO of Apple would at some point manifest himself even if internally.
Just to recap: the manager of an Apple Retail Store in Australia expelled a group of six students (all black) from the store because the security team was concerned that they might steal something. Anyone who follows the Apple world knows how much Tim Cook has been dedicating and fighting for equality and diversity not only within Ma, but nationally and globally.
Because the BuzzFeed had access to an internal email from Apple (which she evidently knew would "leak") in which Cook talks about it. Here is our free translation:
Subject: Apple open
I am sure you are all aware of the unacceptable incident that happened at our store at Highpoint Mall in Melbourne, Australia, on Thursday. Several young people, who are students at a nearby school, were asked to leave the store by a security guard. In an attempt to resolve the situation, one of our store employees gave an answer that shocked many of us.
What people saw and heard when watching the video on the web does not represent our values. It is a message that we would never like to pass on to consumers or listen to ourselves. Our employee immediately expressed his regret and apologized to the students.
None of us are happy with the way it was handled. But we can all be proud of Kate, one of the senior managers at the Highpoint store.
On Wednesday, she greeted the same group of students to express a sincere apology on behalf of our store and our company. She reassured these young people by saying that they and their classmates would always be welcome in our store. Later, the school principal told a reporter that she passed on her message “gladly”, and one of the students said, “It looks like we had justice now.”
Your words that day echoed the message you have heard many times from Angela and me. It's a simple promise that we all make to our customers and ourselves:
Our stores and our hearts are open to people from all walks of life, regardless of race or religion, sex or sexual orientation, age, disability, income, language or point of view. Everyone, across our company, being inclusive and embracing our differences, makes our products better and our stores stronger.
The Apple Store Highpoint is made up of people who share these values and illustrate our commitment to diversity. The team is made up of colleagues from Australia, as well as Egypt, Italy, India and five other nations. Collectively they speak 15 languages, including Urdu, Portuguese, Arabic and Mandarin.
While I firmly believe that this was an isolated incident and not a symptom of a broader problem in our stores, we will use this moment as an opportunity to learn and grow. Our teams of store leaders around the world, starting in Australia, will update their training on inclusiveness and customer engagement. These are concepts and practices that they know well, but that can always be reinforced.
Respect for our customers is the basis of everything we do at Apple. The reason why we put so much care into the design of our products. the reason why we make our stores beautiful and inviting, and we extend their reach to benefit the communities around them. The reason why we commit to enriching people's lives.
Thank you all for your dedication to Apple, our values and the customers we are so lucky to serve.
As always or almost always, Cook proved to be a very sensible person. I have no doubt that he really believes absolutely everything he wrote and that he strives to make Apple more and more open.
There is no way to erase the incident this week, but Apple has taken steps to remedy it and most importantly, avoid as much as possible that this is repeated in the future.