A spokesperson for the Swedish clothing store confirmed on Tuesday that 95 shops have been “temporarily” closed “due to the protests,” Reuters reports.
In an open letter, H&M Group CEO Helena Helmersson voiced the company's support for the black community and said that H&M would be donating $500,000 to the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, civil rights advocacy group Color of Change and the ACLU.
“We stand with and support the Black Community – today, every day and everywhere to end racism in all forms,” the letter said. “The recent killings of Ahmaud Arbery, Tony McDade, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, and more members of the Black Community in the U.S. leave us devastated and heartbroken. Their lives, and the lives of all black people taken by violence, mattered.”
“We also acknowledge our past mistakes and they have made us acutely aware of how much we still need to learn. As a company, we are growing, but we can and must do better,” the message continued. “We re-commit to taking tangible steps to challenge racism and support our colleagues, customers and communities. Symbolic support is not enough – we will take action.”
H&M operates over 5,000 stores worldwide, with nearly 600 of those locations in the U.S.
On Memorial Day, Floyd, 46, died after he was pinned to the pavement by a white police officer in Minneapolis, who put his knee on the handcuffed black man’s neck while he continually stated he could not breathe. His death has since sparked outrage across America.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.