There are so many times I've been at a restaurant where someone has been disturbing me, but there has never been a time where I have been so bold as to ask the restaurant to have that person removed. Sadly, for a family in Glen Burie, Maryland, someone was so upset by their son with a neurological disorder, the manager came and asked them to leave.
Amanda Braun was at Outback Steakhouse with her son, Killian, who was born with a neurological disorder called Childhood Apraxia of Speech, which causes Killian to speak unclearly and have behavioral outbursts. One of the other patrons at the restaurant complained to the manager, which prompted Braun and her son to be kicked out of the restaurant. Braun posted about her experience on Facebook.
Saturday night the family and I decided to go to Outback Steakhouse in Glen Burnie for dinner. We were seated almost immediately. We ordered our drinks while skimming the menu then finally ordered our dinner. Our meals came out in good time and all of us were enjoying ourselves up until we were asked to leave because of a noise complaint about my 4 year old son. My son Killian was born with a neurological disorder that affects his speech called Childhood Apraxia of Speech. This disorder affects Killian in many ways especially communication and behavioral.
He is a very energetic kid with much to say, however when he speaks his words are unclear. A man approached our table about 5 minutes after our food was brought out and introduced himself as the manager. He asked us how our meals were but he didn’t stop there. This gentleman said that he received a noise complaint for my child. He said that he was very uncomfortable coming to our table to tell us that but unfortunately we needed to finish our meals and leave. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. I was in total shock!
As an apology he gave us a $20 outback credit to use at a later date. But needless to say there isn’t going to be a later date. Why would I subject my son and the rest of my family to that type of discrimination? What would ever make me want to return? Would we be asked to leave again if my son were to be loud? This is not ok and I’m not stopping here. I will be in contact with corporate. I ask that everyone that sees this post to please share it. Outback labels itself as a family friendly restaurant just not families with special needs restaurant.
Braun also spoke with WJLA about her experience. She explained that it wasn't like Killian was running around the restaurant.
"Our son stayed with us in our booth," Braun explained. "There weren’t many people around us as we were seated in the very back of the restaurant to accommodate our party size," said Braun. "The anger has subsided and I'm left with sadness for my son and his future struggles of being in public."
Outback Steakhouse has responded to the allegations made by Braun, saying that they've apologized.
"We’ve been in contact with the family and have personally apologized," a statement said. "We strive to make sure all guests feel comfortable and welcomed in our restaurants and we fell short. We’re learning from what happened and training our team so we can better serve our diverse guest population."
Braun says that Outback has offered apologies, gift cards, and even a donation to an organization that works with Killian. As of yet, she hasn't decided how she wants to proceed.