Receipt with ‘discriminatory’ phrase prompts apology from Louisiana restaurant owner

Tanasia Kenney-Mon, March 15, 2021, 12:36 PM

The owner of a Louisiana pub is apologizing after a “discriminatory” phrase was printed on a customer’s receipt.

Frank’s Poboys owner Michael Fontenot said an employee used poor judgment when the worker identified a customer as the “balck [sic] family by window” in the restaurant’s ordering system.

The family, who wasn’t identified by name, stopped in to the Opelousas restaurant for crawfish Saturday when they noticed the phrase printed at the top of their receipt, KLFY reported. In a statement, Fontenot said he wasn’t aware of what happened until he was notified on social media.

“As soon as this was brought to my attention, I addressed it,” he wrote on the restaurant’s Facebook page. “I have a zero tolerance policy regarding any discriminatory behavior, and while I believe the sincere remorse expressed to me by the server, the action was still a violation of those expectations and will be disciplined, up to and including termination.”

Fontenot asked for “grace and forgiveness” and said the incident displayed a need for additional training for restaurant staff. Moving forward, he said employees would only identify customers by name in the internal ordering system.

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“I am once again apologizing for this unfortunate experience,” the restaurant owner wrote.

The apology drew mixed reactions from locals, some of whom voiced support while others branded Frank’s as a racist establishment for “whites only.”

“This place has been racist,” one person commented under Fontenot’s post. “They probably have been displaying this behavior. The only difference is someone called them out this time.”

“I eat there at least 3 times a week and have never experienced racism,” wrote another. “Their employees are both black and white. I’m personal friends with them. I’m not saying the action was acceptable, but it does not reflect the views of everyone there and they have already taken actions to rectify this.”

Fontenot said he hopes the family in the incident sees the apology and contacts him.

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