Sesame Place's parent company meets with Rev. Jackson amid racism concerns

The Sesame Street-themed park has announced the implementation of diversity and inclusion training for its employees.

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Thursday, August 11, 2022
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Attorney B'Ivory LaMarr, who is representing the Brown family, said Thursday's meeting was a "day of progress."

LANGHORNE, Pennsylvania (WPVI) -- The CEO of Sea World, the parent company of Sesame Place, met with Rev. Jesse Jackson Thursday to discuss solutions after a video appeared to show two 6-year-old Black girls being snubbed by a costumed character last month.

It happened back on July 16 while Jodi Brown was at Sesame Place with her daughter and niece.

The nine-second video, posted to Instagram by Brown, showed the character high-fiving a white child and woman, then gesturing "no" and walking away from the two girls who had their arms stretched out for a hug and high-five during the parade.

Brown says the character was intentionally racist toward her family.

Attorney B'Ivory LaMarr, who is representing the Brown family, said Thursday's meeting was a "day of progress."

"When corporations engage in a dialogue as they did with Rev. Jesse Jackson, that is the beginning to effectuate long-term change," said LaMarr.

SeaWorld leaders did not meet with the Brown family during the meeting.

LaMarr says another meeting will take place in two weeks.

Sesame Place has announced the implementation of diversity and inclusion training for its employees following a $25 million class-action lawsuit alleging multiple incidents of discrimination after outcry sparked from the video.

The Sesame Street-themed park in Langhorne, Pennsylvania, said in a statement Tuesday that all employees will be mandated to participate in training created to address bias, promote inclusion and prevent discrimination by the end of September.

RELATED: Sesame Place announces diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives following racial bias claims

The training - which was developed by civil rights educators - will also be integrated into onboarding for all new employees and "will become a regular part of our training and workforce development," the statement said.

President of Sesame Place Philadelphia Cathy Valeriano said the park has already begun implementing temporary measures while a review of the park continues.

"We are committed to making sure our guests feel welcome, included and enriched by their visits to our park," Valeriano said.