UK Bar Criticized for ’Gay Guys’ Receipt

by Jason St. Amand
National News Editor
Friday Sep 20, 2013
  • COMMENTS (5)

Officials from a bar in the United Kingdom are coming under fire after two straight customers were given a receipt that described them as "gay guys," the British newspaper the Daily Mail reports.

Al Butler and his friend, both 26, say when they got the bill for their lunch at Judson’s Bar and Pub in Pocklington, North Yorkshire, the waitress wrote "Gay Guys...Stools" on it to point out where the men were sitting to a coworker.

The note upset Butler and his friend and Butler calls the incident "unacceptable racism."

"My friend spotted it first and said ’I think the manager’s misconstrued our lunch," Butler, an aerospace engineer, told the Daily Mail. "I obviously thought it was inappropriate. It took a while for it sink in. It was not insulting, it was just a shock."

"It’s not a bad thing to be called gay - although I’m not and neither is my friend - but I think it’s prejudiced," he added. "It’s jumping to a conclusion without the need to do so."

He told the newspaper that when he complained in person no one gave him an apology. He said bar officials simply said, "Sorry, there’s nothing I can do."

He even sought out the bar’s owner, Peter Ward, who told the Daily Mail: "We have apologized unreservedly. While it was completely wrong, I don’t feel it was prejudiced. It was completely unprofessional and it is not what our business is about.

"We understand why the two gentlemen concerned were offended and we have apologized to them unreservedly," Ward continued. "We have also disciplined the waitress concerned and put in place a procedure so it will not happen again. I would add that everyone is welcome at Judson’s."

U.K. LGBT rights advocates are upset over the incident as well and James Lawrence of Stonewall, a U.K.-based LGBT charity group, said the staff needed better training to prevent incidents like this.

"Incidents like this highlight the importance of staff training. Identifying customers by their perceived sexual orientation is unnecessary and could cause offence. It’s ’right that the bar should apologies to the customers for this inappropriate behavior."

A spokesperson from the York LGBT Forum also commented on the incident and told the Daily Mail: "Clearly this is an unacceptable and wrong stereotype made by a member of staff at the bar, but it is also a mistake which could cause great offence and upset to anyone involved, regardless of their sexuality. We would welcome any business to contact us should they feel their staff require training on issues of equality, where we would be more than happy to assist."


  • Anonymous, 2013-09-20 22:21:55

    The prejudice is on the part of the patrons, not the bar. They pretend not to take offense to being mistaken as gay, but it’s just pretense. If it wasn’t offensive to be mistaken as gay, it wouldn’t be newsworthy.

  • Bomonghani, 2013-09-21 01:37:24

    for-phuck-sake... who gives a damn... in other news UK bar seats are claiming hostile work environment after being referred to as fecal matter... /sigh

  • Oh Jed said:, 2013-09-21 10:33:32

    Ass pirates...stools 3o’clock. Next.

  • 4x4cheese, 2013-09-21 20:32:24

    So... does this mean I should throw a fit everytime someone assumes I’m dating my best lady friend? I mean, as a gay man, I dont take offense to being called straight, but according to this article it’s clearly racist....

  • Anonymous, 2013-09-23 00:35:51

    Ya calm down jeez... The poor waitress who wrote this.. :/ I’ve worked in the restaurant business for a while and when you need to point out which table you need bused or help with sometimes you use whatever words make that person stand out from the rest. ’red dress’ ’bigger lady’ ’gay guys’ it’s not meant to be rude or seen or heard by the guests but sometimes it can offend. That being said a straight guy being mistook for a gay one should feel very good about himself. It just means he dresses well goes to the gym and grooms himself properly. ;) it’s a complementar! You insecure divas.

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