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Very Real

White Man Loses Job After Being Accused Of Racially Profiling Black Woman At North Carolina Pool

Jasmine Edwards was trying to enjoy the Fourth of July at her neighborhood pool before Adam Bloom called the police on her. 

By Samira Sadeque

A white man called the police after a black woman using her own community pool refused to show him identification Wednesday in Winston-Salem, N.C. The incident cost him his job. 

The woman, Jasmine Edwards, posted a video of the incident on Facebook. In the video, the man appears calm and unapologetic, as the woman asks him to explain why he wanted to see her ID.

The man was identified as Adam Bloom by the Glenridge Homeowners Association, according to the Winston-Salem Journal.

“Tell me, ‘cause I live in this neighborhood, you tell me … is there an ordinance that we have to show ID to use the pool?” the woman behind the camera asks.

“There’s the rule back there,” says Bloom, pointing towards a signboard behind them. The rules are not clear from the video.

“Exactly! Where does it say that I have to show an ID to use my pool? My own pool?” the woman asks.

“It doesn’t say that she has to show an ID anywhere,” another woman from behind the camera says.

Bloom appears unfazed by these questions, and goes on to ask the officers present at the scene what the next steps should be “in terms of procedure.”

The video quickly went viral on Twitter, prompting the hashtag #IDAdam, with some social media users identifying his employer.

By Friday morning, Bloom had been fired from his job at Sonoco, a packaging service provider. 

The video appears to be recorded after the officers got to the scene, during which time the woman shares her experience.

On Wednesday, while Edwards was celebrating the July 4 holiday in the community pool with her son, Bloom approached her and asked for her address, according to WXII12, a Winston-Salem-based NBC affiliate.

Once she gave him the address, he asked her for an ID to verify the address, which is when Edwards resisted.

Bloom then called the police.

“He walked only to me, to ask for my ID,” the woman says in the video, stating that she was the only black person at the pool.

In the video, when the woman says she felt she was being racially profiled, Bloom, a homeowners association member, says he asks residents for their ID “a couple times a week.”

A lifeguard for the pool told the Winston-Salem Journal that the pool is in a gated area, and members would need a card to enter.

“If she has a card to get into the pool, I believe that should be enough,” an officer is heard saying in the video.

“Okay, let’s validate that it works then,” Bloom says.

Once the keycard works at the gate, Bloom says “Alright, perfect.”

"They were able to prove that Jasmine had what she needed to get into the pool,” Winston-Salem Police Chief Catrina Thompson told WXII12. “At the end of the day, there was no need to see an ID, at that point, because there was nothing to say that an ID was necessary."

"We will not be used as pawns to further someone's dislike for anyone," she said.

The officer at the scene apologized to the woman in the video. The woman asked Bloom if he had to apologize, and he ignored her question before leaving the scene.

In their statement on Friday morning, Sonoco apologized to anyone affected by the incident, especially Ms. Edwards and her family.

“The well-documented incident, which involves activities at a neighborhood pool over the 4th of July, does not reflect the core values of our Company, and the employee involved is no longer employed by the Company in any respect,” read Sonoco’s statement on their Facebook page. “Our core values at Sonoco are built on dignity and respect for all, and we do not condone discrimination of any kind, inside or outside of the workplace.”

[Photo: Adam Bloom seen in the video on Jasmine Edwards’ Facebook]