Already this Pride Month, you’ve probably seen plenty of brands launch Pride-themed collections, and even partner with prolific LGBTQ people. But according to actress Dominique Jackson, who is transgender and stars in FX’s Pose, some companies and brands still aren’t getting the real message.
In an Instagram video posted earlier this week, Jackson explicitly called out brands for wanting to appear like they’re supporting and understanding of LGBTQ communities this month, when their actions say otherwise.
“So, happy pride, everyone, I hope you guys have been watching and enjoying Pose,” Jackson said. “A lot of companies join in on the pride celebration to show they’re all-inclusive when they’re really not. They don’t research us. They don’t understand us. They don’t attempt to comprehend us.”
She then gave an example of that kind of behavior she experienced herself, when the brand Coach invited her into its offices this year to tell her “life story” and be a part of its Pride Ball — and then misgendered her.
“They offered nothing,” Jackson said. “Not a car ride. Nothing. Not a pocketbook. Nothing. Then one of their representatives contacts me to invite me to something called their ’Pride Ball’ and misgendered me! You didn’t do your research. You’re not following the true stories of the LGBTQ community, ’cause you would know that a woman like myself should never be misgendered. It’s so insulting.”
“You’re not following the true stories of the LGBTQ community, ’cause you would know that a woman like myself should never be misgendered.”
In the hours since that video was posted, Coach offered an apology letter on Twitter that read: “We clearly erred using a template message we didn’t check before sending and therefore got it wrong. In your words, we should have done more to understand the transgender community and to honor you, as a woman. Inclusivity is one of our company values and, while we endeavor to demonstrate this inclusivity every day, we are also learning.”
Since that apology, Jackson has announced that she’s now working with the brand. “Coach has gone above and beyond to make amends for their errors,” Jackson said in a subsequent Instagram video. “I do believe that they’re trying hard to understand and I also really do appreciate it. In an effort, I will also be collaborating with Coach to send a message of education and inclusion.”
She’ll be celebrating pride with Coach on Sunday.
Mic has reached out to Jackson and Coach for further comment.