Restaurant Threatens To Fire Employee For Getting Shift Covered
One restaurant in New Jersey is facing some serious backlash after a manager threatened to fire an employee who wanted to attend a friend’s funeral and was looking to get their shift covered.
The college student from the College of New Jersey (TCNJ) is a hostess at Café Seventy-Two. She texted her boss, Katie, to check if there was another host who could take one of her shifts. As evidenced by screenshots of this exchange, Katie hastily replied, “Are you serious? No,” before the employee had an opportunity to explain the reason she needed her shift covered.
“Someone close to my just passed away, and I’m trying to find a cover for my shifts so I can attend the funeral service rather than call out and leave you guys hanging,” the student wrote, also sending a link to the announcement of Michael Sot’s death, who was killed in a car accident on Sunday.
The response from her boss was anything but understanding, which reads: “Oh wow thanks. Just don’t come back to work.” Katie continued, “I like you but I’m sick of all staff not taking their job seriously and just f***ing expect me to cover all of your shifts. I have a business to run at the end of the day. And a family.”
Screenshots of the exchange were soon posted to a TCNJ Facebook group, where students showed their support for the employee by saying that they would no longer bring their business to Café Seventy-Two. Students also decided to trash the restaurant on both its Facebook (which has since been deleted) and Yelp pages.
The restaurant’s co-owner, and Katie’s husband, Ben, wrote an apology, ensuring that the employee was not fired, also revealing their donation to Michael Sot’s GoFundMe.
Hello to all of our loyal customers. My name is Ben, the owner and operator of Café 72, a long standing family run business. I am also the husband of “Katie Café 72”. You may or may not have seen some posts on social media reflecting an interaction with a current Café 72 employee whom is also a TCNJ student affected by the recent tragic death of Michael Sot. The employee was not fired. Her last shifts were this weekend before leaving for holiday break to be with her family and friends until January 28th. This private conversation was not related in any way to the mourning of Michael. Although this interaction was displayed completely out of context by a friend of the employee and drastically misrepresents Katie and our establishment, we recognize that there is NOTHING that excuses it. We carelessly let the stresses of family and business replace the professionalism, respect and empathy that every employee and person deserves. We have received countless hate emails, bad reviews and threatening phone calls and ask that they STOP. We understand the anger and animosity that has been created by these posts, and ask for the communities’ forgiveness. On behalf of Café 72 and our family, we offer our sincerest apology. We have been residents of Ewing and operated business for many years in this township. Café 72 has gone above and beyond for Ewing Township and TCNJ through gas explosions, hurricanes, snow storms and other tragedies and will continue to do so. We recognize that it is our patrons and the community that make us special and a place to come together as one. We would like to turn the tremendous amount of negativity around and create as much positivity as possible by contributing $1000 to Michael’s GoFundMe page. We would also like to add to this donation by giving another 10% of all sales the remainder of this week in his honor. Thank you for taking the time to read this and we wish everyone a happy and healthy holiday season.