Fourth Street Live! operator changes dress code after complaints - News, Weather & Sports

Fourth Street Live! operator changes dress code after discrimination complaints

Theresa Boyd Theresa Boyd
John Michaels John Michaels
Michael Aldridge Michael Aldridge
Christopher 2X Christopher 2X
The group gathered at Fourth Street Live! on Monday. The group gathered at Fourth Street Live! on Monday.

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - It appears the battle to end a dress code at Fourth Street Live! that some considered discriminatory may be coming to an end. WAVE 3 News discovered the changes after a rally by several social justice groups who say they still aren't happy with The Cordish Companies.

It was an issue that came to a head in August. Back then, about 200 patrons met with The Cordish Companies Director of Operations Zed Smith to voice their issues. They claimed one of Louisville's top tourist attractions, Fourth Street Live! used their dress code to discriminate against minorities.

In December, The Cordish Companies had a follow up meeting with concerned groups including the American Civil Liberties Union of Kentucky and Connected Voices in December. On Monday, those groups held a rally concerned that Cordish was not letting the public know what was discussed behind closed doors.

"I would boycott this place. I would find a place where I could be entertained where I wouldn't have to worry about your pants are too baggy," said former security guard John Michaels. Michaels said he saw his former co-workers keep people out because of their race.

Theresa Boyd claimed they tried to keep her out because of her skin color. "Us coming here today is a follow up and to put their feet to the fire. Our community deserves a response from them."

Boyd said Cordish officials told them at the December meeting they would change the policy about baggy pants and bandanas, as well as post a 1-800 number where anyone who comes to Fourth Street Live! and feels they were wronged could call. "Cordish said they were going to put up on their website changes that were going to be made and they were aware we would be issuing a press release about these changes."

After WAVE 3 contacted Cordish, the company pointed out the dress code has changed. There is nothing listed about a ban on baggy pants or bandanas on the website. They also listed a toll free number for Fourth street Live! customer service. Manager Jim Layson said they have also posted both the dress code and number at the entrances to Fourth Street Live!.

Layson went on to say says they demand "the dress code be applied fairly and in a uniform, non-discriminative manner. Any statement otherwise is completely false."

In a follow-up conversation with the ACLU of Kentucky after Cordish released their statement, Executive Director Michael Aldridge said they have been looking for the company to be more open and inclusive. Aldridge said the fact that they've issued the statement to WAVE 3 about the changes is a positive step.

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