ADA Blog


ADA Blog #167

Restaurant Refuses to Serve Family

Taking your family to a #restaurant is a common occurrence in every family. Can you imagine if you were told you couldn’t do this because someone in your family had a #disability?

A mom visited a #Golden #Corral in in #Westland, #MI., a buffet-style restaurant, with her four daughters, three of whom have #epidermolysis #bullosa, a #genetic skin disorder that causes #blisters as a result of minor injuries or temperature changes. Even though the mom explained the children’s condition to the restaurant manager, emphasizing that the disorder is not contagious, the manager told the family to leave immediately and said that their presence was making other customers “uncomfortable,” according to a lawsuit by the #U.S. #Department of #Justice.

The rights afforded to individuals with disabilities extend beyond the workplace. The #ADA is a civil rights law provides protection in the marketplace so that individuals with #disabilities can enjoy the same activities as everyone without disabilities enjoy, such as eating out in a restaurant. No one should be excluded from participating in the basic activities of daily living on account of fears of their disability, nor should children be shamed from going out in public.

The restaurant will pay $60,000 after refusing service to a family because their kids look different as a result of a genetic condition ($50,000 in damages to the family; $10,000 in civil penalties).
Under the settlement, the restaurant will also develop a non-#discrimination policy and train its employees to understand their obligations under the #ADA.

The more we understand about disability, the more our unsubstantiated fears can be assuaged. One day it may be you or someone you love faced with the same situation.

This information should not be construed as “legal advice” for a particular set of facts or circumstances. It is intended only to be a practical guide for participants familiar with this subject. Users should seek appropriate legal advice tailored to address their specific situation.