CEO Brian Cornell emphasized that the Pride merchandise removal was the result of “serious safety threats” and “very aggressive behavior” at the stores.

Target CEO Brian Cornell defended the company’s decision to remove some of its LGBTQ Pride merchandise from store shelves earlier this year, saying that the call was made because of “serious safety threats.”

After more than a decade of selling Pride merchandise, Target removed some of its items in May in order to protect the “safety and well-being” of store employees who were receiving threats and backlash over the items, according to a company statement.

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