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Fargo clothing store apologizes, takes down sign saying kids under 7 aren't allowed

Plato's Closet is located at 2551 45th St. S., Fargo.David Samson / The Forum

FARGO—A used clothing store for teens and young adults has apologized after online backlash to a sign that banned young kids.

A store employee who answered the phone Thursday, July 6, at Plato's Closet, 2551 45th St. S., said it's not an official store policy and there was no sign on the door that day. She declined to say her name or title, referring a Forum reporter to a statement posted on the store's Facebook page on Wednesday, July 5.

"The sign has since been removed and does not reflect a store policy of ours," the statement read. "We are currently working with our staff to ensure we create an open and welcoming shopping experience to all our customers. We apologize for any confusion or frustration this may have caused."

When reached by phone, Owner Dean Clark said the sign was removed after "negative social media." He said it was put up by an employee while management was out of town around the Fourth of July holiday.

Clark didn't identify the employee responsible for the two-sentence sign that said children under 7 aren't allowed and ended, "Thank you for understanding." He also declined to clarify if the employee was disciplined and didn't explain what the Fargo location of this Minneapolis-based chain will do in response to the incident.

He said he was on vacation when he heard about the sign. But he had some advice when asked what he wanted local residents to know about the situation.

"We basically want the parents to keep the children under control, and that's all," he said. "There's many times where there's just the kids in the store and they don't even have their parents. They're looking for their parents and they're going up and down the strip mall looking for their parents and they're nowhere to be found."

In an email statement sent to The Forum later Wednesday afternoon, Clark apologized for any confusion the sign may have caused.

"Although we have occasionally had some issues with children with and without their parents, it certainly does not reflect all of our customers," he wrote. "With that said, it is not a store policy and the sign has been removed. We will continue to work our hardest to ensure the shopping experience is great for all customers."

Ryan Johnson

Ryan Johnson has been a Forum reporter since 2012 and previously wrote for the Grand Forks Herald.

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