L’Oreal fires transgender model who claimed ‘all white people are racist’ on Twitter

Bergdorf took to Facebook to react to events in the US city of Charlottesville, where a woman was killed on August 12 after an avowed white supremacist rammed his car into a group of protesters

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 02 September, 2017, 2:33pm
UPDATED : Saturday, 02 September, 2017, 9:51pm

French cosmetics giant L’Oreal on Friday confirmed it had dropped a British transgender model over comments the company deemed “at odds with our values” after she was hired as part of a diversity campaign.

“L’Oreal champions diversity,” the beauty brand said on Twitter. “Comments by Munroe Bergdorf are at odds with our values and so we have decided to end our partnership with her.”

L’Oreal had tapped Bergdorf – a 29-year-old model, DJ and trans activist whose father is Jamaican – as one of the five newest faces of its #allworthit campaign to introduce the five new shades of its True Match face make-up.

The foundation make-up includes 28 unique shades ranging from very light to dark brown in a bid to match the myriad different skin tones and textures of people worldwide.

According to British Vogue, Bergdorf was the first transgender woman to be featured in a L’Oreal Paris UK campaign. But controversy erupted when Bergdorf took to Facebook in a now-deleted post to react to events in the US city of Charlottesville, where a woman was killed on August 12 after an avowed white supremacist rammed his car into a group of anti-racism counterprotesters.

“Honestly I don’t have energy to talk about the racial violence of white people any more. Yes ALL white people,” Bergdorf wrote, according to copies posted in British media. “Once white people begin to admit that their race is the most violent and oppressive force of nature on Earth ... then we can talk.”

In a subsequent post, Bergdorf sought to defend her comments, which she said were a reaction to the violence of white supremacists in Charlottesville.

“When I stated that ‘all white people are racist’, I was addressing that fact that western society as a whole, is a SYSTEM rooted in white supremacy – designed to benefit, prioritise and protect white people before anyone of any other race,” she said.

L’Oreal told British media it “remains committed to celebrating diversity and breaking down barriers in beauty”.