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Headdresses offend, pulled from stores

Toronto - The fashion chain H&M said Friday it pulled faux feather headdresses from its shelves all across Canada after receiving complaints.

H&M spokeswoman Emily Scarlett said the retailer received three complaints they were offensive to aboriginals, and quickly decided to remove the product from the market.

Scarlett said the product was part of the company's summer music festival collection called H&M Loves Music. "Music festivals these days are really about experimenting with fashion and dressing your personality. And they're very heavily based on accessories, really accessorizing your look."

The "music festival" explanation didn't sit well with Kim Wheeler, an Ojibwa-Mohawk from Winnipeg, Manitoba, who said the $15 accessories make a mockery of her culture. She fired off an email to the company explaining that headdresses are symbols of respect and are not some sort of cute accessory.

"Of course we never want to offend anybody or come off as insensitive," Scarlett said. "We're always about being there for our customers."

The order to remove the items promptly went out to 61 Canadian locations.

 
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