The waiter, Guillaume Rey, worked for Milestones Restaurant in Vancouver from October 2015 to August 2016, when he was terminated for being "aggressive, rude and disrespectful" with colleagues. He's since filed a complaint at the British Columbia Human Rights Tribunal claiming he was wrongly booted from his gig at the eatery because his coworkers simply misinterpreted his "direct, honest and professional" French personality. Seriously.
In his allegation of discrimination, Rey maintains that French culture "tends to be more direct and expressive" and that he adopted such behaviors while training in the French hospitality industry. Still, Rey was reportedly warned repeatedly about how he was treating his coworkers until the fateful day he got the sack following an incident in which he brought a colleague to tears after "aggressively" checking their duties -- a violation of the company's Respect in the Workplace policy.
Both Rey and his former employer agree that he was a top-notch server, often working as the shift lead, and that he got great feedback from guests and was always "very friendly and professional with his tables." Behind the scenes, though, it sounds like he was a straight-up jerk to his coworkers. And frankly, even if he's chalking this all up to his French identity, he should have at least expected to ruffle some feathers with that sort of demeanor in a super-polite place like Canada.
The restaurant and its parent company tried and failed to have Rey's complaint thrown out, so his case will be heard at some point soon, though he's going to have to come up with a solid defense.
“Mr Rey will have to explain what it is about his French heritage that would result in behaviour that people misinterpret as a violation of workplace standards of acceptable conduct,” wrote tribunal member Devyn Consineau.
Aggressively rude coworkers: yet another line item on the long list of server pet peeves.
h/t The Guardian, CBC