A transgendered woman claims that she was denied a job at McDonald's and told "we do not hire faggots," according to a lawsuit filed by the Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund (TLDEF) with the Florida Commission on Human Relations.
Seventeen-year-old Zikerria Bellamy applied online for a position as a shift manager or crew leader at an Orlando McDonald's. When she went in for the interview on July 28, Bellamy says a manager forced her to check a box indicating her gender.
"Once I looked at his facial expression, when I checked off male, like the whole face just changed. He was upset. I seen the anger, you know, like you can tell when someone gets upset," Bellamy said.
She said she was told she would not be granted an interview and received an angry, hateful voicemail from the manager later in the day.
"You went to [indistinguishable] McDonald's today," the message says. "It doesn't matter how many times you go down there. You will not get hired. We do not hire faggots. You lied to me. You told me you was a woman. And then you lied to me. You told me you were seventeen. I can't believe you. You're a lying brother. How could you ever lie to me?"
TLDEF has the voicemail up on its website:
"I just wanted to earn to some money and was willing to work hard at this job. In the current economy, jobs are really hard to find. I never expected to be judged on who I am, instead of being judged on whether I can do the job," Bellamy said.
UPDATE: A spokesperson for the McDonalds location has released a statement saying that they prohibit any form of discrimination or harassment in hiring, and that the person involved no longer works for there.
"Sand Lake Road McDonald's has a strict policy prohibiting any form of discrimination or harassment in hiring, termination, or any other aspect of employment in the organization. The restaurant requires all employees to comply with local, state and federal employment laws.
Upon learning about this matter, the restaurant investigated the claims to gather the facts, and action was taken consistent with employment policies.
The behavior of the individual in question is not reflective of the employment policies in the organization. Further, this individual acted outside the scope of his authority and was not responsible for hiring. The individual in question is no longer employed by the restaurant.
Again, the Sand Lake Road McDonald's has a zero tolerance policy prohibiting discrimination or harassment in the restaurant."