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Toronto restaurant to pay $10,000 after asking Black customers to prepay for their meals

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Kaela Johnson | Report

Emile Wickham, a Black man from Toronto has been awarded $10,000 from downtown Chinese restaurant, Hong Shing, after they asked him to prepay for his meal. 

The incident occurred in May 2014 when Wickham and a few friends, all of who were Black, were celebrating his birthday at Hong Shing restaurant when a server told the group that they must prepay for their meals.  Wickham and his friends were the only Black people in the restaurant at the time.

The group complied but Wickham decided to ask other tables if they prepaid for their meals, but every table was not required to do so.

Wickham and his friends confronted the server and were offered a refund which they accepted and left the restaurant.

Wickham pursued a formal complaint which took almost four years to process. The Ontario’s Human Rights Tribunal, declared that Wickham faced racial discrimination and the restaurant infringed on his human rights.

The owner and manager of Hong Shing, Colin Li, posted this statement to their Instagram:

Ontario Human Rights Tribunal adjudicator, Esi Codjoe, ordered Hong Shing to place an Ontario Human Rights Commission Code card in a “prominent place” in their restaurant as  a “visual reminder.”


Image from Vince Talotta/Toronto Star.

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