Chinese Restaurant Ordered To Pay $10,000 After Making Customers Prepay For Food
A black man who was asked to prepay for his meal at a restaurant in Toronto has received $10,000 as a part of a case of racial profiling.
Emile Wickham, 31, was asked to prepay for his dinner at Hong Shing Chinese Restaurant in Toronto’s Chinatown back in 2014. Wickham and three of his friends, who are also black, were told by a waiter that it was restaurant policy to pay for the food prior to receiving it. However, after asking other customers about the policy, the group realized they were the only ones required to prepay for their food.
Following the incident, Wickham filed a complaint alleging racial discrimination against the restaurant. The Human Rights Tribunal of Ontario hit Hong Shing with a $10,000 fine, with the organization stating that the restaurant violated Ontario’s human rights code, according to a report from NBC News.
“His mere presence as a black man in a restaurant was presumed to be sufficient evidence of his presumed propensity to engage in criminal behavior,” Esi Codjoe, vice chairwoman of the tribunal, wrote in a report on the incident. She added that the restaurant treated Wickham like “a potential thief in waiting” as well as violated a code that ensures equal treatment for all when requesting services.
After hearing the decision, Emile took to Twitter to speak on it, writing:
“Being asked if I’m happy about decision, tbh no, more grateful that we were heard and believed. I would trade of this for the two hours of bonding taken away from us that night.”
Source: NBC News