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Restaurant Worker Sent Home Over Hairstyle Alleges Racism

Hostess upbraided over braids.

Outside Madisons in Downtown Montreal
Outside Madisons in Downtown Montreal
Madisons New York Grill & Bar

Madisons New York Grill & Bar, a restaurant in Downtown Montreal, is under fire because of a dispute over a hairstyle. Asymmetrical braids, specifically, on the head of hostess Lettia McNickle. "We don’t want that kind of look here at the restaurant," the manager of Madisons apparently told the 19-year-old in front of her co-workers before sending her home. "I thought, ‘Well, that’s insulting. That’s rude and disrespectful,’" McNickle told the CBC.

"In my view, I honestly, strongly feel that it was against her race," vented Lettia's mother, Huelette ​McNickle, a hairdresser. The hostess has since been denied shifts at the restaurant and has been given "the runaround on scheduling matters." The Centre For Research-Action on Race Relations, a Montreal-based independent, non-profit civil rights organization, is now on the case. Madisons, for its part, claims "McNickle has not been fired and the reason she hasn’t been given any shifts because business is down."

Madisons New York Grill & Bar

1065 rue Drummond, Montreal, QC H3B 4X4 (514) 937-4004 Visit Website

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