Restaurant in La. issues apology after couple racially profiled; employees suspended

Desi Vega's Seafood and Prime Steaks issued a public apology after a black couple was racially...
Desi Vega's Seafood and Prime Steaks issued a public apology after a black couple was racially profiled by having a 20 percent tip automatically added to their bill(WVUE FOX 8)
Published: Mar. 1, 2021 at 11:40 AM EST
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METAIRIE (WVUE) - Desi Vega’s Seafood and Prime Steaks issues an apology to a black couple who was discriminated against while dining at the restaurant over the weekend.

The restaurant posted the apology Sunday night on its Facebook page.

The post says a waiter inappropriately added a 20 percent tip to Mr. and Mrs. Washington’s bill and tried to cover it up as if company policy called for the automatic tip for a party of two.

Posted by Desi Vega's Seafood and Prime Steaks on Sunday, February 28, 2021

Desi Vega wrote, “the fact that the staff lied about it made the situation worse.”

Two employees involved in the incident have been suspended without pay.

Vega says he’s committed to institute training for racial bias and sensitivity for all of his employees.

James Washington said on Facebook that a manager lied to cover for adding the gratuity then admitted it after Washington asked another couple if they had an automatic tip added.

In a follow-up post, he said the owner had apologized. The couple asked for the company to have bias training, a clearly stated tip policy on its menus and to support a group that helps the underprivileged in the restaurant industry, in addition to the public acknowledgment.

“My wife and I believe his apology was genuine. We did, however, emphasize that at this point, this is way bigger than us,” Washington wrote. “The community has rallied behind this and has been vocal in seeking change. Our post began as a simple effort to bring public awareness to a horrible, racist experience and ended up being shared and commented on more times than we could ever imagine. My wife and I appreciate all of the support.”

UPDATE on the Desi Vega experience. Desi Vega, the owner of Desi Vega's Seafood and Prime Steaks, reached out to me and...

Posted by James Washington on Monday, March 1, 2021

Date night with wife Yasmin Racquel, trying to wind down from a long week. Great beginning, bad ending. Decided to go...

Posted by James Washington on Saturday, February 27, 2021

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