Nightclub Apologizes for Discrimination After Shutting Down Black Harvard Alumni Party

That's the last time Cure Lounge will assume Ivy League grads are "local gangbangers."

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Last November, Boston nightclub Cure Lounge closed abruptly when a group of black Harvard and Yale grads showed up for a post-football game party.

Why? In an exclusive with D. Omavi Harshaw, a Harvard J.D. candidate who was at the party, The Root learned that the club explained in an e-mail to promoters that people in line outside [read: black women] would attract "local gangbangers."

As Harshaw put it, "We were kicked out because apparently the promoters did not tell the owner that the Harvard and Yale graduates and alumni in attendance that night would be black."

Today the club has reached an agreement with Attorney General Martha Coakley and the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination stating that it violated state laws prohibiting public places from restricting entry or limiting use based on race, gender or national origin.

Cure has agreed to pay a $30,000 fine to the state, issue a public apology and have its staff attend anti-discrimination training. Paige Hospitality, which runs the nightclub, is also required to post an apology on its website. 

Boston City At-Large Councilor Ayanna Pressley (a 2010 The Root 100 honoree) was the first public official to call for an inquiry into the incident. She issued a statement today congratulating Coakley and stating what should be -- but evidently isn't -- the obvious: "At a time of historic fiscal challenges, Boston's venues should be inviting, engaging and welcoming for every resident and visitor."

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