U.K. store allows employees to wear poppy on Nov. 11

Public backlash over banning of Remembrance Day symbol leads retailer to reverse decision

A clothing store in England has reversed its decision to ban employees from wearing the red poppy to commemorate Remembrance Day.

Hollinger, which is owned by American retailer Abercrombie and Fitch, told an 18-year-old employee at the WestQuay mall in Southampton that she couldn't wear the poppy at work because employees "provide an image of what the clothes would look like for the customers" and since the poppy wasn't uniform, she wasn't allowed to wear it, Harriet Phipps told Britain's Press Association.

Phipps has a friend who is serving in Afghanistan and her grandfather served in the Second World War.

After public outcry over banning the poppy, which is worn in both Britain and Canada in the weeks leading up to Remembrance Day on Nov. 11, the store reversed its decision and will allow employees to wear the poppy on Nov. 11 only.

Hollister released the following statement on Nov. 9:

“As an American company that has been in existence since 1892, we very much appreciate the sacrifices of both British and American servicemen and women in the World Wars and in military conflicts that continue to this day.

“Our company policy is currently to permit associates to wear a poppy as a token of this appreciation on Remembrance Day.

“In the future, we will revisit, in light of local custom, whether to extend the policy to the days or weeks leading up to Remembrance Day.”

The red poppy isn't worn in the United States on Nov. 11, which is Veteran's Day in the U.S.

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