Last week a St. Paul Chipotle manager was fired when a group of young black men claimed she discriminated against them because they were black. But now, Chipotle has re-hired the manager after it became clear that the charges of racism lodged against her were false.
The initial story occurred on November 15 when a black youth in St. Paul, Minnesota, named Masud Ali posted a video to Twitter showing Chipotle manager Dominique Marie refusing to make a food order for the men.
Ali claimed it was evidence of “racism.”
— Masud Ali 🍑 (@Masudaliii) November 16, 2018
In the video, Dominique is heard saying that she “recognized” the men as once having ordered food, but taken it and ran without paying. She also said she wanted to see prof they had money before making their order.
If you have never been to a Chipotle, the process there is that you order your food, the workers make the food and hand it to you, and then you walk with your food to the cash register to pay. In other words, it is different from, say, McDonald’s, where you pay first and then they make your meal.
In any case, Dominique was not about to make food for these men only to have them run out without paying. It is called “Dine and Dash” and it is something deadbeats have been doing for some time.
Ali accused the manager of racism:
The story went national, of course, with blacks across the country throwing charges of “racism” at Chipotle in general and manager Dominique in particular.
Chipotle reflexively fired Dominique because she was an apparent “racist.”
But then evidence began coming forth showing that Ali and his buddies had been committing theft via “Dine and Dash” for months. Social media posts came to light in which Ali repeatedly laughed about stealing food from various restaurants in St. Paul. Other posts showed his friends substantiating the theft and joining in on the crime.
After all this came to light, Chipotle realized it had made a serious mistake in firing Dominique. Indeed, it turned out Dominique was doing the best thing for her employers by refusing to serve people whom she knew would steal the food and skip out without paying.
So, Chipotle did the right thing and offered Dominique her job back.
The fast food company released the following statement:
We have spent the last few days reviewing the evidence available to us regarding the incident in St. Paul, MN. Based on our review, we have offered our manager her job back. While our normal protocol was not followed serving these customers, we publicly apologize to our manager for being put in this position. We will work to continue to ensure that we support a respectful workplace for our employees and our customers alike.
Our policy is to treat our customers and employees fairly and with respect at all times and under any circumstances. We will work with all our restaurant teams to ensure they are prepared to handle situations of this kind and know they have our full support. We are committed to doing the right thing and acting in a manner consistent with a thoughtful, fact-driven approach.
Our actions were based on the facts known to us immediately after the incident. We now have additional information which needs to be investigated further. We want to do the right thing, so after further investigation, we’ll re-train and re-hire if the facts warrant it.
— Chipotle (@ChipotleTweets) November 18, 2018
Dominique also jumped to her social media to note that she was rehired:
Racism is a real issue that I do not take lightly. Racism must be addressed, but what happened here was just wrong. Falsely accused and in return, cut off from a goal that I worked hard for. Today, I was “officially” offered my job back. I’m truly grateful for all the support. https://t.co/83EUsIqt4I
— Dom (@DomMari3) November 19, 2018
There is no news yet if the employee has accepted the offer of returning to her job. But this is a rare instance where a corporation reversed a move to satisfy social justice warriors.
It was wrong of Chipotle to fire Dominique so quickly before it carried out an investigation to see if firing was warranted. But at least the company admitted its mistake.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.