Western Union complaint resolved after apology

By ZEINAB NAJM
Times-Herald Newspapers

DEARBORN — Western Union has resolved a complaint filed by Haidar Abdallah of Dearborn following a racial profiling complaint.

The money transfer service issued the apology on Jan. 16 to the Arab American Civil Rights League which helped file the complaint with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

“After further review, Haidar Abdallah is now currently permitted to send or receive funds via the Western Union Money Transfer service,” the statement from Western Union read. “Quality service to our consumers is our primary concern at Western Union. Apologies for your overall experience and for the struggles you faced interacting with Western Union. Please be aware that discourteous treatment to our customers is neither excusable nor tolerated at Western Union.”

A reason why Abdallah was denied sending money transfers to the Middle East was not given by Western Union.

Since the money transfer denials, Abdallah switched from Western Union to MoneyGram. He does not plan to go back to Western Union after the apology.

In the initial complaint filed Dec. 21, Abdallah claimed he was denied the ability to send hundreds of dollars overseas to Palestine where his wife and children were visiting family.

The incidents occurred at two different Western Union offices in Dearborn when Abdallah wanted to send money to Ramallah. He cited that he had no issue sending money to Jerusalem.

Abdallah said he hadn’t been stopped from sending funds because of a limit until recently when his $300 to $400 transfers were rejected after his seven years of using the service.

Although Abduallah’s complaint was resolved, the ACRL said it will continue to work on solving other claims from residents who were also denied sending funds to the Middle East.

ACRL founder Nabih Ayad said he was glad the issue was resolved and that this incident can serve as an example if the trend continues.

“I’m glad we were able to have the issue handled quickly and without a lawsuit,” he said. “This victory is great for us and Haidar.”

(Zeinab Najm can be reached at zeinabnajm92@gmail.com.)