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Jared Ellis Quits Job At Steak By Melissa After Being Told He'd Need to Wear Prosthetic Eye

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Many workplaces have dress codes, but most won’t ask you to hide your disability as part of the job – something Jared Ellis, a waiter in Hernando, Mississippi, claims he was asked to do.

According to WREG, Ellis said he was discriminated against by his former employer, Steak by Melissa, for not wearing a prosthetic eye or eye covering.

Ellis, lost his right eye in a bb gun accident five days before he was scheduled to join the U.S. Marine Corp five years ago. After he lost his eye, Ellis chose not to wear a prosthetic because of the headaches and discomfort it caused him.

“I finally came to a point where, this is me,” Ellis told WREG. “This is the way I look. You can love me or hate me, but this is my face. This is who I am.”

Ellis began working at Steak by Melissa about a month ago, and was interviewed without an eye patch or prosthetic eye. Then, on Friday, Ellis’s manager said the owners of the steakhouse wanted Ellis to wear either an eye patch or his prosthetic while working. Feeling discriminated against, Ellis quit on the spot.

“[W]hen he said it, it was just, I can’t explain the way it felt,” Ellis said. “It’s about everybody who’s ever looked in the mirror or had somebody tell them there’s something wrong with the way they looked. There’s nothing wrong with you. You are beautiful. Don’t let anyone ever tell you otherwise.”

The Mighty reached out to Steak by Melissa and has yet to hear back. 

Originally published: November 29, 2016
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