Sunday, April 25, 2010

Tampa Restaurant Review - Seasons 52

Tampa Restaurant Review - Seasons 52

My wife and I had a fantastic lunch today at Seasons 52 a trendy restaurant that serves seasonally inspired dishes that are healthy and delicious.
Our server, Haley, was very pleasant and knowledgeable about every aspect of their menu. She was attentive without being overbearing and has a great sense of humor.
However, being the employment and labor lawyer that I am, I noticed that the servers ALL seem to be under 40 years old. Statistically, given that the late Baby Boomers and early Gen X make up more than 0% of the population in the Tampa area, the 0% of over age 40 servers was to say the least, disappointing. Of course, this was my only visit to the restaurant, however, I suppose I should have seen at least one server my age from my generation.
There is not any reason whatsoever that a restaurant’s server staff cannot reflect the demographics of the surrounding area. Take for example, Luna CafĂ© located on Biscayne Blvd and 44 Street in Miami Florida. Their staff is a cornucopia of ages, ethnicities, and gender (at least two) and the food, service and ambience are top notch. Being over 40 should not preclude you from being a server in any restaurant if you can do the job.
Stephen Judge is the president of the chain and I hope he reads my blog and decides to make an effort to investigate my claim and/or to recruit servers who are over the age of 40.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Muslim woman denied job at Detroit McDonald's files complaint

DETROIT ( April 15, 2010 ) A Muslim woman from Troy filed a bias complaint today, saying she was denied a job at a McDonald's restaurant in Rochester Hills because of her religion and ethnicity. A McDonald's official said their restaurant chain does not discriminate and has accommodated religious headwear for years.

Nasihah Barlaskar, 19, wears an Islamic head scarf known as a hijab. She told the Free Press that during a job interview on March 27, a manager at McDonald's asked her about her nationality. The manager then asked "if I had to wear that thing on my head," according to Barlaskar.

Barlaskar said she replied: "I do. Is that a problem?"

The manager then told Barlaskar she probably wouldn't be able to wear that if she was working, according to Barlaskar.

Barlaskar filed the complaint with the EEOC, Equal Opportunity Employment Commission, the U.S. agency that deals with job discrimination. It was filed with the help of Dawud Walid, head of the Michigan chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations.

Joan Rachelson, director of operations for McDonald's Michigan region, said in a statement that the restaurant has a "strict policy prohibiting any form of discrimination."

She said the allegations "are not consistent with our policies."

Barlaskar, who was born in the United States, said it wasn't proper for the manager to ask her about her nationality. Barlaskar's parents are immigrants from Bangladesh.

Barlaksar said she filed the complaint because "I don't want other people to go through what I went through. ... If no one speaks up, this will continue to happen, this won't be the last time. We have to stand up."

In July 2008, two Muslim women, Toi Whitfield of Detroit and Quiana Pugh of Dearborn, complained after a manager at a McDonald's restaurant in Dearborn said they could not wear Islamic headscarves at work. Nabih Ayad, their attorney, filed suit and he said today that the case may go to trial in a couple of months.

Barlaskar said she is a college student who was looking for a part-time job so she wouldn't have to rely on her parents for expenses like gas money. She said her father was recently laid off.

After the interview with the manager, Barlaskar said she did not hear back from her. She said she then called back the McDonald's and was told by the manager that they had hired someone else.

Rachelson, the McDonald's official, said: "It is never our intention to offend anyone. ... We require all employees to comply with local, state and federal employment laws and continually strive to maintain a positive restaurant environment in which everyone feels valued and accepted."

© Detroit Free Press; Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services, 2010

Friday, April 9, 2010

Workers strike over ban on drinking at work

(Reuters) - A few hundred warehouse workers and drivers at Danish brewer Carlsberg halted work for a second day on Thursday to protest a company decision to limit beer drinking at work to lunch breaks.

The strike in Denmark followed the company's April 1 decision to introduce new rules for employees on beer drinking at work, said Jens Bekke, spokesman at the world no.4 brewer.

"There has been free beer, water and soft drinks everywhere," he said. "Yesterday, beers were removed from all refrigerators. The only place you can get a beer in future is in the canteen, at lunch."

Bekke said drivers retained an old right to three beers per day outside lunch hours, and warehouse workers claimed the same right.

"Because of that, the warehouse staff went on strike yesterday, with other staff striking in sympathy," he said.

Bekke said as many as 800 had walked out on Wednesday, with 250 still on strike on Thursday, and the Confederation of Danish Industry and trade union 3F had agreed to look into the dispute.

He said there would be no shipments from Copenhagen on Thursday, and delays in the rest of the country, but said he expected the financial effect of the strike to be minor.

He added that Carlsberg's trucks have alcohol locks so drivers would not be able to drink too much and drive.

(Reporting by Anna Ringstrom, editing by Paul Casciato)

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Going on Spring Break and Getting Arrested; Should Have Stayed At Home.

Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco Arrests 1,092 Underage Drinkers this Spring Break

March 30, 2010

TALLAHASSEE—Agents with the Florida Division of Alcoholic Beverages and Tobacco arrested 1,092 people for underage drinking during statewide spring break enforcement efforts. Vacationers flocked to Florida’s beaches during the month of March, and ABT agents patrolled spring break hot spots including, Panama City, Daytona, Melbourne, Ft. Lauderdale, Ft. Myers, Orlando, Jacksonville and Miami, to protect underage youth from the dangers of alcohol consumption. ABT agents arrested 39 for selling or giving alcoholic beverages to the underage, 50 for providing false identification to a law enforcement officer, and four for narcotics

“Considering the thousands of students who traveled to Florida during this three-week period, we increased efforts to stop underage drinking during this time. I am proud of our ABT agents who helped protect underage Floridians and visitors,” said Interim Secretary Charlie Liem.