A charity event that had been tentatively planned to kick off a collaboration between Jay Z and Barneys New York will not take place.
On Nov. 20, Jay Z will being selling branded products at Barneys New York, including a statesman blanket, a leather backpack and a raincoat.
In the wake of allegations against Barneys, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s office sent letters to Barneys New York noting that racial discrimination in places of public accommodation is illegal. An investigation by the state attorney general’s office is “ongoing and active,” a spokeswoman recently told the Associated Press.
The rapper posted on Life + Times last week, “While I await the findings of the Attorney General’s Office, I have agreed to move forward with the launch of BNY SCC collection under the condition that I have a leadership role and seat on a council specifically convened to deal with the issue of racial profiling.”
He continued, “I am in a unique position to use my voice to affect change to this disturbing issue. The easy position would have been to walk away and leave policy making to others hoping that someone addresses the problem. I will not leave the outcome to others. I will take this into my own hands with full power to recommend, review and revise policies and guidelines moving forward. I am choosing to take this head on.”
The statement by Jay Z also announced plans for Barneys New York to donate 100 percent of sales from the collaboration, up from 25 percent, to the Shawn Carter Foundation, which will donate the money to individuals facing socio-economic hardships for higher education. BNY will also donate 10 percent of retail sales from in-store and barneys.com from Nov. 20 to the foundation, , with a guarantee of raising a minimum of $1,000,000.
In a previous statement from Oct. 26, Jay Z stated: “I move and speak based on facts and not emotion. I haven’t made any comments because I am waiting on facts and the outcome of a meeting between community leaders and Barneys. Why am I being demonized, denounced and thrown on the cover of a newspaper for not speaking immediately?”