Petco's Blatant Discrimination Practices Prevent Consumers of Iranian-Descent From Observing Nowruz

Petco's Bias Toward this Cultural Tradition are the Grounds for an Impending Lawsuit.

 Three separate potential patrons were denied purchasing goldfish in preparation for Nowruz— a yearly cultural tradition—on three separate occasions by Petco sales associates. It was soon discovered that retail stores were given direct orders from Petco flagship offices to refuse the sale of goldfish to anyone who is purchasing with the intent of celebrating Nowruz. Though Petco may assume they are advocating for animal rights, what they fail to realize is they are explicitly targeting and discriminating against a specific segment of the population: Persians, those with Iranian descent and communities who also participate in the tradition.

There are approximately 600 thousand to one million Persians and Iranians living in Los Angeles alone who observe the yearly tradition. This does not include the various ethnic groups and communities who have co-existed and lived in Iran who also participate in the tradition, such as Armenians and Afghanis. Nowruz is also celebrated by peoples and countries that share borders or are in the same region such as: Afghanistan, Albania, Azerbaijan, Georgia, India, Iraq, Kazakhstan, Kosovo.

Nowruz, is an annual cultural tradition that is celebrated on the vernal Equinox or the beginning of spring. The word “Nowruz” is a combination of two Persian words: no, which means "new," and rouz, which means "day." The custom consists of family and friends gathering and setting a display table with seven specific items that embody the beginning of the new year. Some of those items are: a mirror symbolizing the reflection on the past year, colored eggs to represent fertility and a bowl of real goldfish to symbolize new life.

Even after said customers explained the importance of goldfish for their ritual, the cultural significance and the humane way in which the fish will be handled and taken care of, they were still denied the sale of purchase. In response to these clearly discriminatory actions conducted by Petco, these consumers have turned to Henrik Sardarbegian from Sardarbegian Law Offices, to file a lawsuit against Petco.

For more information about the lawsuit or press conference details, please contact  Sardarbegian Law Offices at  (818) 240-1212 xt. 2.


Categories: Civil Rights, Business, Law

Tags: Discrimination, Persian, Persians, Petco