‘They need to go’: Subway employee calls cops on black family who ate sandwiches
The owner of a Subway franchise in Georgia is offering his “sincerest apology” to a black family from North Carolina that had the police called on them when they stopped for sandwiches and to use the bathroom.
And they believe it all came down to their skin colour.
The Dobson family of Winston-Salem, N.C. was celebrating a grandmother’s 81st birthday in Georgia last week.
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On their way home, two parents, a sister and four kids aged eight through 19 stopped at a Subway restaurant in Newnan, Ga. for food, drink and a bathroom break.
“We walk in, pay for our subs, we have those, we ask for cups of ice because, you know, you travel with kids, you have juice,” mother Felicia Dobson told WFMY News 2.
They finished eating and Dobson advised them all to use the bathroom before they went home.
The Dobsons were in the restaurant for approximately one hour when an employee called 911, reported WSB-TV 2 Atlanta.
She accused them of filling cups with soda.
“They need to go, they just need to go,” she said on the 911 call.
“They keep going back and forth to the bathrooms by my back door.”
A police officer eventually showed up.
According to Dobson, the officer said the employee characterized the family as suspicious, and that she had been robbed in the past.
She said the police officer apologized and the Dobsons went on their way.
In a message to Global News, Dobson said the content of the 911 call upset her most about the whole situation.
Her children, she said, are “great, kind people.”
“911 is to be used for emergency situations, not your discomfort,” Dobson added.
Subway issued a statement saying, “It is our expectation and each franchisee’s goal to make sure that every guest will be treated with respect and integrity they deserve.”
The employee in question was placed on leave “until a full review is completed.”
WSB-TV 2 reported that franchise owner Rosh Patel also issued a statement, saying, “I take this very seriously, and I am fully investigating. I have also used this opportunity to reiterate to my staff the importance of making everyone feel welcome.”
Patel apologized to the Dobsons, too.
- With files from The Associated Press
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