A restaurant worker in Oxford, Mississippi is out of a job and banned from the business’s premises after printing a racist note on an African-American customer’s receipt.
Alexandria Washington and her friend had stopped for a bite to eat from the drive-thru of Who Dat’s Southern Food last Friday, WMC Action News 5 reported. After receiving her order, however, Washington noticed something that made her stomach turn.
The words “Black b—–s in silver car” were printed at the top of her receipt.
“Something told me to look at my receipt,” Washington told the station. “My car isn’t silver, for one. For two, I wasn’t rude. I didn’t have any type of hostility, [and] he didn’t have any hostility with me.”
The University of Mississippi student wasted no time alerting the restaurant manager, who forced the unnamed employee to issue her an apology. In her post, Washington said initially, she “wasn’t going to say anything [and] gave them the opportunity to do right,” according to the Clarion-Ledger.
“But nothing has been done,” she said.
Washington said she asked that the employee responsible for printing the racist slur on her bill be fired, however, her demands to the restaurant’s management fell on deaf ears. That’s when she decided to go public.
“I seek justice for this hate crime, and will no longer remain silent,” she wrote, adding that the incident made her feel “racially ridiculed and demeaned as an African American Female.”
“I’ve lived in Oxford for 5 years and I’m still having to deal with this type of ignorance, Washington continued. “I’m not a rude or hateful person. I was not rude when I was at this establishment and was greeted with this kind of service. I will not stand for it.”
Her post caught the attention of Who Dat’s owner Wylie Coleman, who wrote back to Washington and confirmed that the drive-thru worker in question had been terminated. Taking his quest for justice a step further, Coleman met with Washington face-to-face to apologize.
We sat down for “for 1.5hrs this morning, discussing a broad range of issues and goals in our lives as we work through the summer,” Coleman said in a lengthy Facebook post. “We have so much common ground.”
“From the bottom of my heart I would like to apologize to the young ladies that were attacked by this injustice,” he added. ” I am not only apologizing to her but to everyone & anyone that could subject to a label in life. I have taken the trash out in this instant that I’m in control in, but I would like to inform everyone that I will not condone this anywhere.”
Coleman explained it was their joint decision to fire the offending employee and said Washington had been “nothing but sweet & communicative during the entire events that transpired.” He also made it a point to emphasize that the worker’s actions “did not represent us as a business. We do not feel this way about women or condone any racial identifier.”
As for Washington, the young woman said she hopes to move on from the incident and won’t hold it against the restaurant because of the actions of one bad apple.
“I take this all as a learning experience and we should all move forward from it to make Oxford a better place,” she told WTVA.
The incident comes on the heels of a similar occurrence at two Smoothie King stores in Charlotte, North Carolina where employees also printed racial slurs on customer receipts. Both workers were fired and the stores shuttered for additional employee training.
“This behavior does not in any way reflect our company’s commitment to creating an open and welcoming environment, and for that, we sincerely apologize,” the company said in a statement.