Apology From Pizza Hut

06 December 2010 07:22
Pizza Hut have issued an apology to AFC Bournemouth following discriminatory action at one of their Bournemouth outlets. A group of black Cherries players visited Pizza Hut after they were asked to pay up front because of the "way they looked". Anton Robinson, one who was caught up in the incident, is quoted in the Bournemouth Evening Echo as saying: "We ordered our food. The manager came up with the bill and said: ‘Would you mind paying first?’ “We asked if that was the policy and he said ‘no’. When we asked why he’d asked us, he said: ‘It’s the way you look.’ “We had a good idea what he was trying to get at. A group of white kids came in straight after us and they weren’t asked to pay before they had their food. The only thing that was different was the colour of our skins. We said we were professional footballers and were happy to pay when we had finished. That’s what normal people do. He hadn’t asked other customers to pay before their meals. It got a little bit heated, then he said: ‘If you’re not going to pay the bill now, I’m going to call the police to escort you off the premises’". Pizza Hut issued a statement saying: "We do not tolerate any form of discrimination, so immediately investigated this incident. While our duty manager’s actions were absolutely not racially motivated, we are very sorry for the way this was handled. Police recently recommended that the restaurant started asking people to pay for their meal before dining, to combat a number of incidents where customers had left without paying. Unfortunately, it seems this approach was not enforced as a blanket policy and we have ensured all staff have been retrained. We will be contacting the customers concerned to apologise". Chairman Eddie Mitchell is quoted on the Clubs Official Web Site as saying: "We were all highly disappointed to hear about the treatment a number of players received on a recent visit to Pizza Hut. Our players are magnificent ambassadors to AFC Bournemouth, their behaviour is exemplary and they are a credit to the club. In this day and age, it is upsetting to hear that people are treated differently because of the colour of their skin and at AFC Bournemouth, we will not condone any treatment of people in such a way".