PEMBROKE PINES -- A South Florida police union is calling for a national boycott of Arby's after police say Police Officer Jennifer Martin was denied service by an employee at the fast-food chain, reports CBS Miami.
According to a police report on the incident, the police officer was told by a manager at the restaurant that an employee did not want to serve her. The manager allegedly said, "He doesn't want to serve you because you are a police officer."
After the uncomfortable encounter, the officer said she was uncertain she wanted to eat at the restaurant. The manager tried to assure her everything was fine, and handed over her food. According to the report, the manager allegedly laughed and said the clerk was allowed to refuse service to the officer.
The officer decided not to eat at Arby's and went inside to ask for a refund.
"I am offended and appalled that an individual within our community would treat a police officer in such a manner. It is unacceptable," said Pembroke Pines Police Department Chief Dan Giustino.
Arby's issued an apology in regards to the incident.
"We take this isolated matter very seriously as we respect and support police officers in our local communities. As soon as the issue was brought to our attention, our CEO spoke with the Police Chief who expressed his gratitude for our quick action and indicated the case is closed. We will be following up with our team members to be sure that our policy of inclusion is understood and adhered to. Further, we will be following through with disciplinary action up to and including termination of the employees involved, as appropriate."
In reaction to the incident, the Dade County Police Benevolent Association is calling for the employees involved to be fired.
"It is beyond comprehension and deeply troubling that a business would deny service to a law enforcement officer just for being a law enforcement officer,"said Florida and Dade County PBA president John Rivera in part. "In this case, after the clerk refused to serve the officer, the manager came up to the window laughing and said that the clerk had the right to refuse service to the officer. This is yet another example of the hostile treatment of our brave men and women simply because they wear a badge."
CBS Miami reports that the incident is considered to be isolated.
"We are very proud of the partnerships we have built within our city, and for an incident like this to have happened is very disappointing for everyone," said Chief Giustino.
It was Chief Giustino who contacted the corporation after the incident.
CBS Miami reports that according to police, the Arby's Chief Executive Officer Paul Brown and Senior Vice President of Operations Scott Boatwright apologized on behalf of the organization. Both men assured the chief, "The employee's behavior was unacceptable and not representative of the company's values."