A sign in Romanian warning shoplifters in Tesco supermarket they will be prosecuted if caught has angered some Romanians living in the UK.
Iolanda Costide who heads the Liberal Party’s branch in the UK, office wrote to Tesco’s chief executive Ken Murphy on Saturday accusing the company of discrimination after the sign appeared at an unspecified Tesco supermarket.
“It is unworthy of a chain presenting itself as progressive, in the service of people, such as Tesco to allow ethnic profiling in your shops. The image shows a warning, in Romanian language, against thieving,” the open letter read.
She said the poster suggested that “Romanians are thieves, or maybe only those who do not master the language of the bard, and need to have your outrageous message spelled out in Romanian?”
She called on Tesco to remove the poster from shops and said a note would be sent to the Equalities & Human Rights Commission about the matter.
She was not the only one angered by the poster which appeared in at least one store in the wine and beer section. Adevarul.ro called it “a disgusting message to Romanians.”
The police logo on the warning is „West Mercia” which covers the Worcester and Warwick area in western England.
However, not everyone agreed. Romanian Florin Ular wrote on Facebook that the poster as was in Romanian “ not… based on racist reasons, but on previous experiences. It’s not Tesco’s fault if the thieves are mainly Romanian. “
There are about 460,000 Romanians living in the UK according to the Office for National Statistics. Romanians are the biggest group of non-British nationals in London.