An Alabama restaurant finds itself in legal hot water after declining service to a Black fraternity, the latest in a string of racist incidents nationwide at restaurants.
Kappa Alpha Psi’s Alabama chapter filed a racial discrimination lawsuit on June 27 against Tuscaloosa’s Cypress Inn, Al.com reported. It stems from the restaurant canceling the Kappas’ reservation in February to rent a pavilion after learning that the fraternity is an “all Black group.”
A restaurant representative returned the fraternity’s $1,500 registration fee after citing security concerns, the lawsuit stated. In response, the fraternity offered to cover expenses for additional security, obtained insurance and showed photos of past fraternity events.
The restaurant’s owner, however, was unmoved, citing problems with the fraternity’s “kind” in the past.
This comes on the heels of other high-profile racist incidents. Chili’s was one in a growing list of eateries, like Waffle House, where managers have either called or threatened to call the cops on Black customers for no good reason.
A viral video, viewed more than 250,000 times, shows police officers confronting Black customers on June 23 at a Chili’s parking lot in Abbeville, Louisiana. A group of about a dozen friends chatted quietly after purchasing their to-go food. The restaurant manager, apparently concerned about a group of Black folks congregating in the parking lot, called the cops to disperse them.
The federal discrimination lawsuit alleged that Cypress Inn refused the fraternity services that it has provided to white customers. It asks the court for compensatory damages, punitive damages, and an injunction that would stop the restaurant from racially discriminating against others.
Cypress Inn declined Al.com’s request to comment on the lawsuit.