Restaurant Owner Has Strong Message for Patrons Who Disrespected Autistic Waiter
Grenache restaurant in Manchester, England, wrote a “strongly worded” message on its Facebook page on Thursday, March 3, after a group of patrons made rude remarks about one of their employees, Andy Foster, who has autism.
Mike Jennings, the owner of Grenache, told the Manchester Evening News the customers refused Foster’s service, and instead asked what was “wrong” with him and why Jennings would employ him.
Citing the incident as “totally unacceptable,” Jennings wrote, “We do not discriminate. If you do… Then please do not book a table at Grenache.”
Thoughts on an incident which occurred last night….Totally unacceptable.Strongly worded but we need to get our point across.#equalopportunities Posted by Grenache Restaurant on Thursday, March 3, 2016
Watch: Restaurant boss defends autistic waiter after customers ask not to be served by him https://t.co/mefsWBS5NX— Manchester News MEN (@MENnewsdesk) March 5, 2016
Foster, who is also a registered caregiver to his mother, who has Alzheimer’s disease, started working at the restaurant three weeks ago, reported The Independent.
“In our eyes nobody should be discriminated in any industry and we feel that sometimes you’re served by people and you have no idea anything about that person,” Jennings told the Manchester Evening News. “You shouldn’t have the right to judge that person or treat them any differently.”
“I try not to take it personally because it has happened so many times in the past, I have just got used to it,” Foster added. ”I’ve been in this situation a few times in the past on a reasonably regular basis and I’ve always felt that it was my fault and I needed to apologize. And with Karen’s and Mike’s support they have shown me that that is not the case. Mike and Kaz have been so supportive saying it’s not my fault. I shouldn’t be treated different to any other member of staff.”
Read Grenache’s response in its entirety below:
Thoughts on an incident which occurred last night….
Strongly worded but we need to get our point across.
Today was spent rebuilding the confidence of one of our team, after being disrespected by a table dining with us last night.
‘What is wrong with him?’ and ‘Why would you give him a job?’ they asked…
Here at Grenache, we employ staff based on experience, knowledge and passion for the job…. NOT the colour of their skin, or the way they look, how many tattoos they have, their dress size, religious beliefs or illness. We do not discriminate!
If you DO…. Then please do not book a table at Grenache. You do not deserve our team, effort or RESPECT!
#teamGrenache #equalopportunities #fairrightstojobs #respect