A Montgomery man and several others in a large group of mostly African-American patrons celebrating a birthday party at a Buffalo Wild Wings in Naperville say they were asked to change tables because of their skin color, which company officials say has now led to the firing of a service manager and shift manager.
The story made national news after a post about the incident surfaced over the weekend.
The Associated Press reports that Justin Vahl, of Montgomery, says he was at the 75th Street restaurant last week, on October 26th, with a total of 18 children and adults when a host asked him about his ethnicity.
Vahl asked why his ethnicity mattered when a manager asked the group to move, because a regular customer didn’t want to sit near black people.
Vahl, and many from that group spoke out on Tuesday morning, during a press conference.
Group members say after several managers on staff tried to move the group, one saying the table had been reserved, the group collectively decided to leave for another restaurant.
After the story made headlines, a Buffalo Wild Wings spokesperson said that a service manager and shift manager were fired and that sensitivity training would be done. The statement issued apologies.
Attorney Cannon Lambert, who was retained by the group says they would like to be in communication about the training taking place and wants it to be acknowledged that a racist incident happened. The group would like implementation of a zero-tolerance policy.
Local elected officials, civic leaders, churches and community organizations also joined in the press avail.
Lambert says there has not been a lawsuit filed at this point, saying of the company, "that will depend on their posture, not ours" and that he fully expects the company to appreciate the gravity of the situation.