The employee continued to argue with me, and I told her again that we weren’t yelling, we were having a conversation. That was what Somali sounds like. She then told me, “You’re disrespecting me. You know what? Leave, or I am calling the cops.” I was scared to hear this because we were not doing anything wrong. Another employee told me to leave, and I asked for the manager. The same women who disrespected us and was threatening to call the police told us that she was the manager. I told her again, “Don’t respect me like that, I was talking to my family in my language and having a conversation. You’re going to disrespect me because I speak another language?” She responded “I don’t want to hear it, this has nothing to do with that, you can leave or I’m calling the cops.” We were again being threatened. I decided to go inside the store and speak with the same manager who was threatening to call the police on us, in hopes of trying to resolve the situation. My brother stayed in the car because he was afraid. He never had to deal with the police before, and as a Black man in America he was scared for his safety. I wanted to know what exactly we did wrong and to stand up for people like me. When I entered the store, I was called a “b-tch” by a white female employee. Two white women were standing by to help film the situation. I went up to the same manager and asked her “Why are you threatening to call the police on us? What exactly did we do wrong?” She changed her attitude and tried to play the victim. She told me, “You were yelling, you were agitated. That’s why I was threatening to call the cops.” Her definition of “yelling” is that we were speaking in our language, in our own car, and she knew that. She knew nobody was talking to us in the microphone yet, and we were just having a conversation. I was not going to leave until the police showed up. I wanted to know exactly what we did wrong. She called the police, and they showed up. Two officers arrived; one of them went inside the store to get her side of the story, and one of them interviewed the other witnesses and me. I explained to the officer what happened. My mother explained her side of the story, as did the other witness. The officer came back and we were told we were being served a trespass, meaning we could not come back to this location or we’d face arrest. The officer told me that any business can get a trespass on anyone. I was the one served with a trespass because I speak English and defended my family. I could not believe what they did to my family and me. As we were walking back to the car to leave, one of the employees came from the back door and harassed us.
Guys, I need your help. Today my family and I want @dunkindonuts. Before we even place our order through the dr thru, we were told to leave for speaking in our native language. We were called a “ bitch.” The police were called on us, and now can’t go back their. I am disgusted. pic.twitter.com/A1foloR1ma— Hamdia Ahmed (@hamdia_ahmed) October 15, 2018
I asked the officer, “Do you see this? She just harassed us, and you’re not going to do anything?” The officer told me, “I will go inside and deal with it.” My family and I left, traumatized. I was crying, and my mother and brother felt so sad. We did not commit any crime and yet the police were called on us. We never threatened anyone, we never harassed anyone— nothing. The only crime we committed was speaking in our native language and having a conversation. I am so disgusted that people act this way. I am disgusted that the police were called on us. We see so many cases where the police are called on Black people for no reason with terrible consequences. We saw the Starbucks situation, where two Black men were arrested just for sitting inside a Starbucks, and many other situations similar to this. I want Dunkin’ Donuts to train their employees so that situations like this don’t happen in their stores again. Your employees are serving people from different backgrounds and religions. If they don’t know how to act professionally, they don’t need to work in your business and they reflect poorly on the entire company. I want those two workers who discriminated against and disrespected my family to be held accountable, I want training for their staff as well. If we are going to give our money to Dunkin’ Donuts, they need to respect us. The owner of that particular store has reached out and apologized to my family and I for what happened. He acknowledge that the police should have never been called. We appreciate his apology, but the damage has already been done. My family and I have been traumatized by everything that happened to us. Stop calling the police on Black people for no reason. __________________________________________________________________________ Dunkin’ Donuts issued the following statement in regards to the incident:
This is the trespass paper I was served with pic.twitter.com/604MXKSkja— Hamdia Ahmed (@hamdia_ahmed) October 16, 2018
Dunkin’ and our franchisees are committed to creating a positive customer service experience for all of our guests. The franchisee who owns and operates the store has confirmed he has met with the guest, sincerely apologized to her for the poor experience and is working on providing additional customer service training to his store crew.