Brian Dale, co-owner of the damaged vehicle commented - "It is just so hard to believe after never having an accident in our 10 years long relationship with State Farm and paying more than $12,000 in premiums, they would totally refuse to assist us in our greatest hour of need. I've always believed their commercials which said 'like a good neighbor, State Farm is there'. It seems they are there if customers continue to pay premiums and never when really needed".
Totally distraught about the most recent and brazen acts of racial hostility, Mr. Dale continued - "Travis Schneider(State Farm employee) was totally degrading to my wife, the African American business and me. To accuse this business of selling illegal and black market parts when in this business' 30 year history, no such allegations have been made, let alone proven is totally outrageous".
The incident began with State Farm making the claim that only 'preferred' car repair shops would be paid repair money from the vehicle claims. Locally, these preferred vendors are white-owned businesses, exclusively, while no such agreements are made with seasoned, well established African American car repair businesses.
Preferred relationships such as these, in general, involve previously established agreements between State Farm and white owned businesses which promise 'rebates' to vendors who either give information, regardless of accuracy, to State Farm which allows policy holder's rights to be violated. Such agreements force policy holders with vehicles more than 10 years old to fore go car repairs in favor of State Farm proclaiming such vehicles 'total losses'.
The African American business owner who Mr. Dale chose for car repairs stated - "This car isn't totaled. Not even close. Insurance companies have allowed my business to fix cars with much more damage than this and never designating it totaled."
Mr. Dale continued with - "I am a disabled veteran, exhausted and have limited resources. My wife and I struggled each month for the last 10 years to make sure our insurance was paid and this they do? They (State Farm) even refused to help with my wife's medical bills. Now our car is damaged and no help with the medical bills is forthcoming. Should our race matter in a time of need such as this? State Farm's car repair shop treated my tow truck driver (Hispanic owned small business) with such racial hostility that I was shocked. When he (tow truck driver) showed up to tow my car, they (white business owners) literally threw the keys in his face."