Last Updated on February 21, 2020
Upmarket clothes and food store, Marks & Spencer, recently issued an apology after a biological woman, who self-identified as “Non-binary,” was barred access from the male changing rooms at one of their franchises.
The non-binary individual, Myla Corvidae, 30, was born female, but now identifies as “non-binary,” and uses they/them pronouns–which have been subject of controversy on social media–wanted to try on some items of clothing at the Aberdeen city center story, in Scotland.
Staff, however, turned Myla away from the male changing room, pointing out that they were “only for men.”
Since the incident, Marks & Spencer has issued an apology after Myla formally complained about the incident, stating that a “mistake had been made” following the mix-up.
The incident happened in December reportedly left Myla shocked, upset, and reduced to tears.
According to the Daily Mail, Myla said, “I’d picked up some shirts and jumpers from the menswear section and went into the changing rooms nearby.
“There was no attendant so I just went on in. I left the changing room to grab a bigger size in one of the jumpers and a female attendant approached me on the shop floor,” they explained.
Myla continued, “She told me I couldn’t use the changing rooms there as they were ‘only for men’ and said that I had to use the changing rooms downstairs which are for women.
“I was utterly shocked and the only thing I could think of to say was ‘I’m not female’ to which she looked me up and down, apologized and walked off.”
The interaction left Myla deeply upset, moving them to tears.
Myla recalls, “I felt sick, like I was being accused of some kind of crime just for trying on clothes. Afterwards, I went home and cried. I have never been accosted like that in a store before.
“I had to go back in and speak to someone in store because no one took it seriously the first time and I started crying even trying to talk about it again with them.”
The incident inspired Marks and Spencer to issue a statement, where the spokesperson said,
‘With our fitting rooms we only offer individual lockable cubicles and this is to ensure every customer feels comfortable and has the privacy they need.
‘The fitting rooms are located within our womenswear and menswear departments and therefore are mainly used by customers of that gender, however, as an inclusive retailer and in line with most other retailers, we allow customers the choice of fitting room in respect of how they identify themselves.
‘Clearly on this occasion a mistake was made, we have apologized to our customer for this incident, additionally our store manager wrote a personal apology assuring the customer they have spoken to the team.’
Despite issuing a formal personal apology, Myla says that it was not enough as it felt like a personal attack.