We received a written complaint that Chicks On The Square, in Macom, Illinois, allegedly might be practicing racial discrimination in treating customers that walk into its establishment.
Here is part of the complaint:
“When we entered Chick’s at about 1:00 p.m., no one was ahead of us, and the establishment was not busy. Two employees … saw us enter, but both loitered behind the register just chatting and ignored us. We waited at the front door. Their behavior continued while at the same time looking at us. They made no attempt to approach or signal us to wait or sit. Meanwhile, another couple came in behind us. The … man grabbed two menus and on the sly, signaled the couple to approach and follow him to a booth. We were stunned by the action and exited in anger. It is useful to note that the couple who enter after us was Caucasian. Your employees are Caucasian. Everyone in the establishment appeared to be Caucasian. There were no visible minorities. We are not Caucasian, African American, or Hispanic. What can a reasonable person conclude about your employees and your establishment? It would appear that you employ racist employees in a racist establishment. It would be reasonable to also conclude that your employees engaged in blatant racism (i.e., discrimination based on race). This is reprehensible, despicable, and utterly unacceptable, and these two individuals must be disciplined.”
Here is part of the company response:
“I had a conversation with … our GM at Chicks in Macomb.
He mentioned that he spoke with you regarding this unfortunate incident. I hope this has been resolved If not, or if I may be of further service please contact me.
There is no excuse for this behavior, we do not condone racism!
Our goal is to create WOW Experiences for everyone who walks through our doors.
I sincerely hope this incident can serve as a learning experience for our young staff and bring us together toward a long lasting beneficial relationship.”
Partial response by the offended party:
“At this juncture, based on the incident, my wife and I will not be able to patronize Chick’s On The Square in Macomb, Il. The initial experience has left an indelible mark on us and may dissipate over time. Being from Los Angeles, CA where both people and good food are appreciated, coming to Macomb and attempting to find good cuisine is certainly a chore. Finding out that something good is out there was exciting, but the experience just entering the door was disappointing. Maybe in the future when things improve at the restaurant, we will be able to patronize and enjoy your establishment, but for now, best wishes.”
Score Card’s analysis:
The incident should have NEVER have taken place.
Being on the receiving end of discrimination vs apologizing that such action took place does not equal out in this case. What a person “says” by their behavior often times speaks louder than written or spoken words of excuses. The owner never stated that any disciplinary action took place and thus the “remedy” appears inadequate. Chicks On The Square explanation was not, on the face of it, boiler plated but appeared to came close.