AIBU to want to write a very strong worded letter of complaint to Mcdonalds?

(153 Posts)
LookingforRainbows Sun 21-Jun-15 09:30:29

So this happened yesterday at a Mcdonalds in London:

We were in the queue buying lunch, and my dsis needed to use the toilet. She has a 'hidden' disability and requires the disabled toilet for her needs, but the disabled toilet was locked, fair enough, stop everyone from using it and protects it for people who need it, like my sister. So, dsis went to ask a member of staff if it could be opened for her.
Well, just our luck that she happened to ask a complete bitch. The staff member told my dsis that she could not use it as she wasn't disabled. Ok, fair enough she didn't know. So my sister then explained to her that she does have a disability but it's a 'hidden' disability, and she will need to use the disabled toilet because of it. The girl gave my sister a horrid look (which I saw and at this point I came over) and said, 'you don't have a disability, you look perfectly fine to me to use the toilets downstairs' Again, my sis explained that her disability is hidden, so you wouldn't 'see' it or realised it, but it still required her to use the disabled toilet. The girl then said, well if you can't see it, then it can't be that bad so you can use the toilets downstairs and in the time you have spent trying to get into this toilet you could have finished the queue for the downstairs toilets (!!!!!!!!!) my sister politely said, 'what do you class as a disability here?'. The staff replied, 'you have to be in a wheelchair, or have something wrong with your legs so you can't get down the stairs'.
My sister replied, 'well I think you need to go on some disability awareness training, because some people, like me, have disabilities that are nothing to do with their legs and still need to use the disabled toilet.' The girl then asked my sister very rudely, 'what is your disability then? Because I can't see anything wrong with you' (!!!!)
My sis did not want to publically announce her disability to the whole of Macdonalds, but the total irony was that we had just finished doing the London Walk for Crohn's and Colitis and we were still wearing our tshirts!! So my sister said, if you want to know my disability, look at my tshirt, we have just come back from doing a charity walk for my disability, yet here we are being discriminated against because of it! The girl said, 'I'm not discriminating against you I just don't understand why you can't use the toilets downstairs, otherwise everyone will want this toilet unlocked for them.

I could not believe my ears at the rudeness of this young lady. My sister was absolutely humiliated (we were in public) and she was looking at us like a piece of shit.

So we told her to get the manager.
She huffed rudely 'fine!'.
We stood waiting by the disabled toilet and people were looking at us.
When the manager arrived with her, she said to the manager (before either of us could speak) these people can't be bothered to queue for the toilets downstairs- and she is saying that she is disabled.
And at this point my sister interrupted, 'excuse me I can speak for myself thank you very much!' We then explained to the manager what had happened etc. the manager did not ask any awkward questions or give us any funny looks, he simply took the key and opened the door and smiled and said no problem.

He was then extremely apologetic, and asked if we wanted anything free, but we had already bought out meals and to be honest after this incident we didn't even want to eat our food as it had left a bad taste in our mouth. I did see the manager take the member if staff aside and talk to her, but it didn't seem like she was being reprimanded.

Anyways, even this morning, thinking about it has got me livid and worked up. The irony that even when you are wearing a tshirt for Crohn's, you can still get prejudice right in front of your face!!

My sister wants me to help her write a strongly worded letter, as I often write letters of complaint for my work and it's my forte, but DH says that because the manager was apologetic and offered us a free food (which we had declined) we have no leg to stand on and we should just leave it....

AIBU to still be livid?

Euphemia Sun 21-Jun-15 09:32:59

That's disgusting - I hope you got her name. Definitely complain.

AlpacaMyBags Sun 21-Jun-15 09:33:23

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ChessieFL Sun 21-Jun-15 09:33:53

Yanbu to be annoyed, but I think Yabu to take it further. What more would you expect from a complaint letter? The manager apologised, let you use the toilet, offered free food and spoke to the member of staff concerned. What more could he do?!

Dowser Sun 21-Jun-15 09:35:32

Yes and still write. You can still praise the manager

DogWalker75 Sun 21-Jun-15 09:35:54

How disgusting. Definitely complain!

addicted2cake Sun 21-Jun-15 09:36:54

No, you should still write to head office. Did you get staff members name? You should let them know that once manager was called they were helpful and the situation was resolved, but that you feel that extra training needs to be in place to make every staff member aware that disabilities come in many different guises.

CrohnicallyAspie Sun 21-Jun-15 09:37:21

No YANBU. Apart from anything else, surely a disabled toilet should only be locked with a radar key, otherwise it's not accessible. If you had urgency for example, by the time the staff had unlocked the door (even without being a bitch, I mean if they had got it straight away) you would have had an accident. then there's the fact that they were completely unaware of invisible disabilities, you might have had a stoma or be incontinent and require a sink in the same room as the toilet, you might have sensory difficulties meaning you require a single private cubicle etc.

But I personally think you should look up the relevant legislation and detail exactly why McDonald's failed to meet it, take some of the emotion out of it and look at it from a purely legal point of view.

WizzardHat Sun 21-Jun-15 09:37:43

Definitely, definitely complain. She really shouldn't be interacting with the public. I wouldn't have expected the manager to give her a bollocking where you or anyone else could see it though but I would want confirmation that this would never happen again to anyone.

InexperiencedDisneyMum Sun 21-Jun-15 09:37:52

Why did your sister need to use the disabled toilet? I have crohns and have never had to use one. Does she have a colostomy bag?

The employee didn't handle the situation well I agree but what was the reason she couldn't use the toilets downstairs?

Dowser Sun 21-Jun-15 09:37:53

The more they can do is offer the staff training.

DogWalker75 Sun 21-Jun-15 09:38:33

Chessie, if OP complains then it might make the incident less likely to occur in future to somebody else as McDonalds can address the issue (extra training, updating policies etc.). Otoh, it may not make any difference, but you can try.

Lottiedoubtie Sun 21-Jun-15 09:38:54

I would complain to make the point to the managers seniors that it has happened. I would expect them to confirm the member of staff has been disciplined and given extra training and that the manager would be ensuring that all other staff in the branch were suitably trained.

CrohnicallyAspie Sun 21-Jun-15 09:39:04

chessie the point of writing such a complaint would be to prevent other people being in the same situation in the future. Even if this staff member took it on board, other members of staff who weren't there might feel the same as they clearly didn't cover this in training. Then there's the locked door problem I mentioned earlier.

LookingforRainbows Sun 21-Jun-15 09:39:14

I am really pleased wit the the manager, my only regret is at we did not call him sooner, so yes I would praise him in huge letter if I write one. Chelsea I think I just want it flagged up that the staff obviously needs better training, and while we were offered free food and the manager was nice, I just think something like that should not have happened in the first place, and who's to stop it happening again!

Athenaviolet Sun 21-Jun-15 09:40:19

You might as well complain.

They need to improve their disability training.

But in reality mcds has such a high turnover of staff it isn't really going to help.

Iloveonionchutney Sun 21-Jun-15 09:40:46

Being a fellow sufferer I would definitely complain, disgusting behaviour by the girl.

WellErrr Sun 21-Jun-15 09:41:12

Really inexperienced!?

Really!??

CaptainAnkles Sun 21-Jun-15 09:41:13

They should really be trained to be polite to their customers and not yell stuff out that could be discussed privately, not to mention they should be aware that not all disabilities are obvious. I usually find staff in McDonald's to be very polite but this one sounds dreadful.

MythicalKings Sun 21-Jun-15 09:41:17

You made a complaint at the time and it was dealt with admirably by the manager.

YWBU to take it further.

LookingforRainbows Sun 21-Jun-15 09:42:04

Inexperienceddisneymum, yes, she has a colostomy bag and needed to change her bag and use her equipment

Stealthpolarbear Sun 21-Jun-15 09:42:45

You may be really pleased with the way the manager handled this situation specifically but it doesn't reflect well on the manager that it happened in the first place. He needs to take on some of the blame for this and the majority of the responsibility for putting it right in this particular store.

MrsTedCrilly Sun 21-Jun-15 09:42:55

That's disgusting OP, not only ignorant but rude too. I really really hate small minded people who think everything is so black and white. Yes you should take it further so they can look at their training.

InexperiencedDisneyMum Sun 21-Jun-15 09:42:55

I thought that might be the case sorry if I offended anyone.

LookingforRainbows Sun 21-Jun-15 09:42:59

Yes we did get her name but not sure if I'll be able to spell it correctly as I didn't write it down!

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