Prada: Drop your lawsuit against former-employee Rina Bovrisse
  • Petitioning Claudia Burbui

This petition will be delivered to:

Senior HR Manager at Prada
Claudia Burbui
Owners of Prada
Miuccia Prada & Patrizio Bertelli
Deputy Chairman of Prada Group
Carlo Mazzi
Head of the Supreme Court of Japan
Hironobu Takesaki
Head of the District Court of Tokyo
Yuichi Okada
Head of the Supreme Court of Tokyo
Shuichi Yoshikai
Chief Operating Officer at Prada USA Corp.
Ruggero Caterini

Prada: Drop your lawsuit against former-employee Rina Bovrisse

    1. Barrera Murakami Ayako
    2. Petition by

      Barrera Murakami Ayako

      Matsumoto, Japan

Rina Bovrisse, a former employee at Prada in Japan, was shocked when her boss told her to fire scores of coworkers because they were “old, fat, ugly, disgusting or did not have the Prada look.” When Rina spoke out, she was fired. Now, Prada is suing HER for $780,000 for allegedly damaging the Prada brand even though they don’t deny their discrimination.

Prada Japan hired Rina, a Japanese national, in April 2009 as Senior Retail Operations Manager and tasked her with overseeing 500 Prada employees. She moved to Japan with her two year old son, excited about the opportunity ahead.

Almost immediately, Rina began observing evidence of discrimination in Prada’s HR department. She recalls the company’s CEO ordering the demotion and transfer of fifteen female employees (many of them long-serving, top saleswomen) because they were “old, fat, ugly, disgusting or did not have the Prada look.” When she spoke out against this injustice, Rina was criticized for her own appearance, offered a demotion to an entry-level sales staff position, and then urged to resign.

In 2010, Rina and two of her Prada colleagues decided to take a stand. They filed a lawsuit against the luxury fashion label, arguing that Prada’s appearance-based discrimination and harassment violated Japanese law. But in 2012, the judge ruled that Prada’s demonstrated discrimination was acceptable for a luxury fashion label and that a well-compensated female employee should be able to withstand a certain level of harassment.

Now, Prada is taking the outrageous step of countersuing the single mother to the tune of $780,000 for speaking out about the company’s discrimination. It's bad enough Prada is discriminating this way, but to SUE a woman who fought back? That’s unacceptable and Prada must drop the suit.

As a woman in Japan, I have experienced gender discrimination in employment too. It’s a huge problem in my country where none of the top companies are led by women. Rina has become the symbol of this injustice in Japan and if we let a major company like Prada bully her, other women will be afraid to stand up against discrimination too.

Join me in standing for gender equality by calling on Prada to stop bullying Rina and to drop its suit against her.

To:
Claudia Burbui, Senior HR Manager at Prada
Miuccia Prada & Patrizio Bertelli, Owners of Prada
Carlo Mazzi, Deputy Chairman of Prada Group
Hironobu Takesaki, Head of the Supreme Court of Japan
Yuichi Okada, Head of the District Court of Tokyo
Shuichi Yoshikai, Head of the Supreme Court of Tokyo
Ruggero Caterini, Chief Operating Officer at Prada USA Corp.
Demonstrate your commitment to ending gender discrimination by dropping your lawsuit against former employee Rina Bovrisse.

Sincerely,
[Your name]

Recent signatures

    News

    1. This case has finally reached the Supreme Court of Japan

      Barrera Murakami Ayako
      Petition Organizer

      On June 4, 2014, Prada Group's Defamation Case was filed at Supreme Court of Japan.

      On June 5, 2014, Women's NGO filed an official report on Prada Group Defamation Case filed at the Supreme Court of Japan to the United Nations Human Rights Committee.

      We now have to wait for the decision from the Supreme Court of Japan.

    2. Verdict for the case against Rina

      Barrera Murakami Ayako
      Petition Organizer

      At long last the case by Prada against Rina has come to its verdict. Unfortunately the court of Tokyo sided with Prada arguing that Rina bringing to light the discrimination practices damaged their brand image. But there have been a partial victory since the penalty against Rina has been drastically lowered from close to $800,000 down to $33,000. Their goal is to lower the punishment enough to where they believe Rina is able to pay it and be willing to accept it and finally go away quietly.
      Rina is not going to accept this or go away quietly. Even against the small amount she is going to file an appeal to the court and continue to fight for what she knows is right.
      And so should we. Now more than ever is the time to put pressure on Prada because they're starting to back off. It is time to demand Prada to end their frivolous case and apologize to Rina for their harassment and discriminatory treatment.

    3. Rina on CBS news

      Barrera Murakami Ayako
      Petition Organizer

      Hello everyone. This is our latest update.

      As you may know, Rina's case was covered by CBS news. Here are some links to the Prada Story coverage on TV in America.
      Thank you so much for your support. They covered Change.org a lot and the story was well researched.

      Meanwhile, the final testimony was filed at the Tokyo Court on Monday the 5th of August and the judgement day was announced for November 12th at 11 am.

      Caroline Kennedy, who was recently chosen as the first female American Ambassador to Japan, will receive a copy of the testimony.

      Thank you for your support as always.
      Ayako

      CBS NEWS
      http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2013/08/06/ex-prada-employee-who-accused-fashion-house-of-discrimination-fights-nearly-800k-countersuit/

      YAHOO NEWS
      http://news.yahoo.com/video/ex-prada-employee-accused-fashion-070500484.html

      This links to the last court statement (English/日本語)

      http://goo.gl/CG5KZo

    4. Court Update

      Barrera Murakami Ayako
      Petition Organizer

      After showing their unwillingness to even receive the petition, Prada this week made clear in the Tokyo court that they will not abandon their law suit against Rina for damaging their brand by revealing discriminatory internal company practices. This is doubled with the irony that Prada admitted to the sexist harassment that Rina made public.
      At this court meeting, the judges stated that they are now allowing Rina to present to the public the documentation of sexist memos and decisions that crossed her desk. Here is one of them. In this email Davide Sesia makes clear to Rina that a store manager's job security is tied to her physical appearance. This is outrageous. Imagine if you had to stay young and slender or you would lose your job.

      http://goo.gl/LlCAF

    5. Prada hung up on me

      Barrera Murakami Ayako
      Petition Organizer

      Prada Japan hung up on me and is showing that they have no interest in hearing our voices. As always, thank you for your continuos support on this important issue.

    6. Reached 100,000 signatures
    7. Over 200,000 signatures!

      Barrera Murakami Ayako
      Petition Organizer

      Thank you all so much for supporting Rina. We now have over 200,000 signatures! I have the intention to deliver the signatures and messages from you to Prada soon.
      Thanks again.

    8. Reached 75,000 signatures

    Supporters

    Reasons for signing

    • Frank Ballesteros LAS CRUCES, NM
      • 23 days ago

      I abhor discrimination of any kind. As an American of Hispanic descent I have been subject to this nonsense all of my life. Enough is enough!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • Guido Valobra de Giovanni GLENDALE, UNITED STATES
      • 23 days ago

      Prada è un marchio italiano di qualità nel mondo. Ma anche assai chiacchierato per certi sistemi di trattamento del personale fuori Italia. Se non vogliono assumere persone non attraenti o non giovani possono anche farlo (se è legale in Giappone). Una volta assunte, tuttavia, devono difendere, rispettare queste persone e, in caso di buone vendite, premiare il loro lavoro. Qualsiasi altro atteggiamento è discriminatorio, e spero che la corte suprema del Giappone punisca pesantissimamente tale comportamento, senza punire la "whistle-blower", signora Rina Bovrisse.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • L.D. Zafar ORLANDO, FL
      • 23 days ago

      PRADA: People Retaliating Against Demeaning As#%@8!s

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
      • 23 days ago

      JUSTICE!

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:
    • s caswell PAAUILO, HI
      • 23 days ago

      This would never happen to a man. "old,fat and disgusting should warrant a lawsuit too.

      REPORT THIS COMMENT:

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