One branch of the popular IHOP pancake restaurant has recently gone controversial after one mother complained about the way her disabled son was treated while they were at the store.
Apparently, William Bancroft, who was only 3 years of age, didn’t have arms and the restaurant’s general manager had and issue with that.
3-year-old William Bancroft is doing his best to live a normal life, despite having no arms.
According to Alexis, the mother of William, the young boy usually sits on the table and uses his feet to eat and drink. Unfortunately, restaurant manager approached them and said the child can not sit on the table for “health department issues”.
As if that was not enough, the manager also pointed out that William is not allowed to touch the syrup dispensers using his feet for sanitary reasons.
Alexis, William’s mom, defended she washed the boy’s feet in the bathroom before they began eating.
In an interview, Alexis explained:
“I asked her what’s the difference between hands and feet?
“I asked, ‘Do you ask all your customers if they’ve washed their hands before they touch the syrup dispensers fist?’”
Although the manager later returned to apologize about what she did, Alexis and her family “chose to leave for the way my child was treated”.
The mother from Arkansas later said:
“Everybody was staring at us and everything. They were going to give us our food, but we decided to leave because of the way he was treated. He was discriminated against for not having arms.”
Other customers were also disappointed with how the young boy was treated. Alexis further went on:
“We go to multiple restaurants around our area, and no one has ever said anything about him. Most people are just amazed that he can even feed himself with his feet…
“Some people say it’s unsanitary for a kid to be seated on the table, but that’s how stuff happens in our household. My son sits on the table every single meal throughout the day.”
Both the manager and the IHOP company later got in touch with Alexis after she posted about the incident on Facebook.
The manager apologized the second time by sending a private message via social media. Employees likewise contacted the mother, expressing they were “completely shocked” and “deeply ashamed” about their manager’s behavior.
Meanwhile, IHOP released a statement to address the issue, saying the company does not “tolerate actions that are or allude to discrimination of any type,” promising they will “retrain” their staff “to ensure IHOP’s level of service, particularly regarding guests with disabilities, is provided to all”.
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