Civil Liberties Union filed a complaint with the Louisville,
Ky., Human Relations Commission, claiming
"discriminatory treatment" based on
sexual orientation in an East Market Street McDonald's, the
ACLU announced Tuesday. Ryan Marlatt, Teddy Eggers,
and three others entered the McDonald's for lunch and
claimed they were verbally harassed from an employee
"Nobody should be
treated the way my friends and I were at that
McDonald's," Eggers, of Indianapolis, said in the statement.
"When we finally got to speak with a supervisor, she said
she didn't see what the big deal was. I couldn't
believe what was happening."
While waiting for
their meal, Marlatt and Eggers overheard the female
employee refer to them as "faggots." An
argument ensued between the employee and customers,
where more antigay slurs were used. Marlatt and Eggers
then consulted the supervisor on duty, asking for an apology
and full refund. They were denied.
"It may just be a
few dollars for a Big Mac and some fries," Marlatt
said, "but if I'm going to spend my hard-earned money
anywhere, I should be able to do so without being
Eggers say they want an apology, a refund of the $28 they
spent on the McDonald's meal, appropriate disciplinary
action for the employees involved, and commendation
for an employee at the counter who attempted to
solve the dispute.
Since the July 26
incident, Marlatt filed reports with the McDonald's
corporation as well as phoned the East Market Street
McDonald's. Each complaint was ignored, and
many times he was hung up on, the ACLU says.
complaints have gone unanswered by McDonald's,
Louisville has a law that protects people from this kind of
treatment from any business," said Christine Sun, an
ACLU senior staff attorney, who is representing
Marlatt and Eggers. "Even though they won't return Mr.
Marlatt's phone calls, we hope the Human Relations
Commission will convince them to finally respond to this."
Louisville has a
human rights ordinance that prohibits discrimination on
the basis of sexual orientation in public arenas. (Kandice
Day, The Advocate)