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Sesame Place apologizes after Kelly Rowland and more protest treatment of Black girls in viral video

Paras Griffin/Getty Images for Essence

Sesame Place issued an apology after Kelly Rowland and others spoke out against the treatment of two Black girls, who were ignored by a costumed character in the theme park. 

In a viral video at a parade, the girls reached out to greet the character, who waved a hand in a "no" gesture after high-fiving multiple people.

Their mother wrote, “The kids wanted to stop to see the characters. THIS DISGUSTING person blatantly told our kids NO then proceeded to hug the little white girl next to us! Then when I went to complain about it, they looking at me like I’m crazy. I asked the lady who the character was and I wanted to see a supervisor and she told me SHE DIDNT KNOW!! I will never step foot in @sesameplace ever again!"

Over 10,000 comments slammed the character's behavior. Rowland reposted the clip in her Instagram Stories writing, "Had that been me... that whole parade would have been in flames."

In response, Sesame Place posted an apology on Instagram. 

"Our brand, our park and our employees stand for inclusivity and equality in all forms," the statement began. "That is what Sesame Place is all about and we do not tolerate any behaviors in our parks that are contrary to that commitment. We also are, and have always been, committed to making sure every family and every child has the best possible experience at our parks and we are incredibly disappointed when that does not happen. Regarding the incident yesterday, the costumes our performers wear sometimes make it difficult to see at lower levels and sometimes our performers miss hug requests from guests."

Taraji P. Henson commented, “This is blatant racism," and City Girls' Yung Miami added, "RACIST!" The Black girls' mother deemed the apology "disrespectful and distasteful.”

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