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Woman Say Richmond McDonalds Discriminated Against Her By Refusing Her Service Because of Language


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#1 DonLever

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:17 PM

A B.C. woman is claiming she was refused service at a Richmond McDonald's because staff said they couldn't understand her English.
Hai Xia Sun ordered a hot chocolate at the McDonald's on Number 3 Road in Richmond last week, but said staff gave her a coffee by mistake.
Posted ImageHai Xia Sun ordered hot chocolate at a Richmond McDonald's last week, but got coffee instead. (CBC)
She said she asked that her order be fixed, but alleges the manager refused and told her to get out of the store instead.
"She said, 'You don't know English,' and then she returned my order. She said, 'We are very busy, don't stay here,'" Hai Xia Sun told CBC News.
Sun called the incident discrimination.
"This is my second language right. And this is discrimination. Yes maybe I speak not very good English but she can't not service to us."
Restaurant blames 'language barrier'

But a McDonald's spokesperson says it was an isolated incident caused by a "language barrier," not discrimination or poor service.
"We regret that this customer was offended during her recent restaurant visit. We have since been in communication with her son who has expressed appreciation for our efforts to resolve the situation," said a later statement issued by communications director Jeanette Jones.
"What is alleged to have taken place is not consistent with the franchisee’s commitment to quality customer service and to reflecting the cultural mosaic of the restaurant’s local community," the statement read.
The Vancouver suburb of Richmond is popular with Chinese immigrants. According to Statistics Canada, 41 per cent of the population lists a Chinese dialect as their first language.
Queenie Choo, CEO of SUCCESS, a Vancouver immigrant group, says incidents of discrimination are uncommon in local businesses.
"Well I think it's a very unfortunate situation. The way I look at it, it's a situation where there's a communication issue. It takes two to tango," Choo said.
Nevertheless, Sun's son David Zhao wants McDonald's to take action by hiring Mandarin speakers at local restaurants.
"In Richmond, how come they don't hire a person who can communicate in Mandarin. All right? That's not a big deal," said Zhao
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#2 Jägermeister

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:27 PM

Nevertheless, Sun's son David Zhao wants McDonald's to take action by hiring Mandarin speakers at local restaurants.
"In Richmond, how come they don't hire a person who can communicate in Mandarin. All right? That's not a big deal," said Zhao


I'm amazed they didn't have someone working there who spoke Mandarin just based off chance.

Edited by Jägermeister, 23 August 2013 - 06:28 PM.

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#3 Go Faulk Yourself

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:28 PM

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Nevertheless, Sun's son David Zhao wants McDonald's to take action by hiring Mandarin speakers at local restaurants.
"In Richmond, how come they don't hire a person who can communicate in Mandarin. All right? That's not a big deal," said Zhao


I really hate people that think that companies in a country that is primarily english-speaking should hire a Mandarin speaking (Or insert other language here) worker to please them.

If I were to go to lets say, Italy, I would expect myself to learn some Italian, I would not expect others to know English. People need to take initiative and learn English.

Edited by Go Faulk Yourself, 23 August 2013 - 06:28 PM.

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#4 Jägermeister

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:29 PM

If I were to go to lets say, Italy, I would expect myself to learn some Italian, I would not expect others to know English. People need to take initiative and learn English.


What's funny is that half the people in Italy speak better English than half the people here.
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#5 Wheels22

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:29 PM

It's kind of ironic.. Every fast food place in my area has at least 4 Chinese people working there, and I can rarely understand them..

So, you'd think there would have been at least 1 person who could have understood her
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#6 King Heffy

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:30 PM

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I really hate people that think that companies in a country that is primarily english-speaking should hire a Mandarin speaking (Or insert other language here) worker to please them.

If I were to go to lets say, Italy, I would expect myself to learn some Italian, I would not expect others to know English. People need to take initiative and learn English.

Companies shouldn't have to. However, it makes good business sense to hire someone who can communicate with a large segment of your potential customers.
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#7 Go Faulk Yourself

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:34 PM

Companies shouldn't have to. However, it makes good business sense to hire someone who can communicate with a large segment of your potential customers.


Absolutely, I just dislike people who come to a country and think they should cater to their inability and laziness to learn the language before coming to that said country. As an example, I work with a lot of Filipino co-workers, they ALL know English fluently, they all spent years learning it before coming to Canada. Why can't others do the same?

I do work in retail so my viewpoint might be bias where I'm coming from, as I have to deal with it time and time again and it's irritating how some people don't know a lick of English.

Edited by Go Faulk Yourself, 23 August 2013 - 06:34 PM.

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#8 King Heffy

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:37 PM

Why can't others do the same?

The issue is the Chinese school system is absolutely terrible at English instruction. They teach students how to pass a certain test, not how to actually communicate in a language. It's all done by rote memorization.
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#9 Totes McGoats

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:37 PM

McDonalds is run by Asians who can't speak English... I don't understand. I was thinking that this was going to be a random english speaking person getting discriminated against for not speaking one of the other 3 major languages used in Vancouver on a regular basis.
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#10 The Bookie

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:38 PM

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Christ there are some whiners out there. I lived in a heavily Asian area of East Vancouver years ago and had trouble at my local bank branch, went through three different tellers with poor English skills who couldn't understand what I was asking. When I eventually (awkwardly) asked if there were any native English speakers working, I was told "Yes, one, but she went for lunch."

I didn't go to the news, I went to a different branch. And that was dealing with my money, trying to pay bills to keep my life functioning. Surely there's another McDonalds or a cafe for this woman to get her precious hot chocolate.
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#11 DonLever

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:40 PM

The woman should have gone to the Human Rights Tribunal instead of the media. She could have gotten $10,000 like those East Asian people who was refused service by the Langley Shark Club.

Edited by DonLever, 23 August 2013 - 06:41 PM.

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#12 hudson bay rules

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:42 PM

Cantonese will get you much further in Richmond than what Mandarin will.


http://www.richmond....nguages6251.pdf

Edited by hudson bay rules, 23 August 2013 - 07:00 PM.

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#13 hsedin33

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:43 PM

WOW. The issue isn't the language, its about one idiot manager who doesn't understand proper business etiquette. You don't tell someone to leave the store if they aren't doing anything wrong. How hard is it to understand hot chocolate? Simply point to the machine. I've had to deal with customers where I didn't understand a word they said, but I didn't tell them to leave. I simply listened harder and tried to see what they wanted. Regardless of how busy they are, they have a right to eat food, and languages are hard to learn.
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#14 Rypien37

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:45 PM

Fully went into this thread expecting it to be a WHITE women who only spoke English and no one at the store could.
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#15 Warhippy

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:51 PM

I really hate people that think that companies in a country that is primarily english-speaking should hire a Mandarin speaking (Or insert other language here) worker to please them.

If I were to go to lets say, Italy, I would expect myself to learn some Italian, I would not expect others to know English. People need to take initiative and learn English.

But that makes sense. And in the "Multicultural" Canada where we don't ask people to leave the same habits they were trying to get away from in their own countries behind, that is not allowed.

People trying to escape or get away from all of these issues in their own countries refuse to adopt Canadian policies or values, it is this country constantly bending over to others again and again. So very many examples, most notably last year where the words and holidays of Christmas and Halloween were banned outright from a school because it offended 3 childrens families.

With all due respect and at the risk of sounding racist, isn't Richmond, where it is nearly 40% Chinese speaking anyways (as a second language) capable of having someone mandarin speaking by default working in a mcdonalds?

I mean that would be like me walking into a tim hortons and seeing nothing but Caucasians working, she very well may have picked the only Mcdonalds in Richmond without a mandarin speaking employee.

Kinda laughable that her answer is hire all the mandarins!!!
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#16 the grinder

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:55 PM

next time I go to tim hortons I better not get coffee when I order tea or im going to the media and then get 10,000 dollars lol
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#17 Go Faulk Yourself

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:55 PM

With all due respect and at the risk of sounding racist, isn't Richmond, where it is nearly 40% Chinese speaking anyways (as a second language) capable of having someone mandarin speaking by default working in a mcdonalds?


And I believe it's like 1/3 people in Richmond know English as their first langauge.

Kinda laughable that her answer is hire all the mandarins!!!


This is the part that pissed me off.
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#18 JoeyJoeJoeJr. Shabadoo

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 06:57 PM

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I'm still trying to figure out why in Richmond you can have stores where nothing is written in English and no one speaks English and that's okay but this is an issue.
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#19 7thMan

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 07:01 PM

So, you move to a province where 80% of people speak primarily English without being fluent in English and then you're angry when you have trouble communicating?

Edited by 7thMan, 23 August 2013 - 07:03 PM.

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#20 soshified

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 07:02 PM

I really hate people that think that companies in a country that is primarily english-speaking should hire a Mandarin speaking (Or insert other language here) worker to please them.

If I were to go to lets say, Italy, I would expect myself to learn some Italian, I would not expect others to know English. People need to take initiative and learn English.


He probably meant he's surprised that there wasn't a worker there who spoke mandarin.
Not saying that a company had to hire one but probably saying that there wasn't an employee who could speak mandarin.
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#21 Luciferase

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 07:17 PM

It's so convenient to point to racism as the reason but I just think it was a general lack of common sense, patience and etiquette in part of the management.
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#22 Warhippy

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 07:29 PM

And I believe it's like 1/3 people in Richmond know English as their first langauge.



This is the part that pissed me off.

is it 1/3rd? I thought the story said 40% Oh well, either way really. As another poster pointed out it's ignorance on the managers part more than it is discriminatory, and as I pointed out it's just bad luck she walks into the ONLY macdonalds in the area without a mandarin or Cantonese speaking employee
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#23 Mr.Habitat

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 07:36 PM

is it 1/3rd? I thought the story said 40% Oh well, either way really. As another poster pointed out it's ignorance on the managers part more than it is discriminatory, and as I pointed out it's just bad luck she walks into the ONLY macdonalds in the area without a mandarin or Cantonese speaking employee


40 percent Chinese.... But there are other immigrants from other areas of the world living in richmond that English isn't their first language. Korean, East Indian etc.
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#24 hudson bay rules

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 07:41 PM

So we need staff that speak Mandarin, Cantonese and English 24/7?

When I worked for McD's many years ago we had only one cashier at times and then 2 when it got toward's maybe 8 am. English only speakers would never get hired if they needed 3 languages on at all times.
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#25 Samuel Påhlsson

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 07:50 PM

Still find it funny that people expect good service at a place like McDonalds. Billion dollar company sells bottled water but can't afford a recycling program.
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#26 TOMapleLaughs

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 07:59 PM

I ordered several nice meals in Paris with my broken french and menu-pointing. It was embarrassing, but i still got my meals and they were great. The only time i was disappointed really was when i ordered fries 'frites' at McDonalds. Stone cold and floppy.

So perhaps this isn't a language problem but a McDonalds problem.
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#27 AppleMrHan

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 08:04 PM

Really?

Edited by AppleMrHan, 24 August 2013 - 08:58 AM.

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#28 Canada Hockey Place

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 08:19 PM

"Yes maybe I speak not very good English but she can't not service to us."

It's kind of messed up that we all understand that sentence.
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#29 aeromotacanucks

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 08:20 PM

that´s the problem...

people in Canada simply tolerate too much this thing. the person is in your country but refuse to speak your language and somehow everything is ok. but as far as I know Canada is an English-French country not an English-Frend-Mandarin-Cantonese-Hindi-Korean language...



because imagine if every single language should be considered on every city in Canada. so every sight or board must have a translation on every language spoken on this country. would be expensive and confuse...


If you´re in France and you want work there speak French, if you want work in Russia speak Russian, if you want work in Korea speak Korean and etc etc etc...



in Brazil if somebody want immigrate to here, live and work the 1st thing is "LEARN OUR LANGUAGE" because nobody will understand you if you don´t speak portuguese, we respect you, your culture and you home country. but if you´re here to live with your family speak our language when you´re working so people can understand you perfectly....


there´s even a test for this. Immigrants only get citizenship or working permission after a written and oral test to prove he/she can speak our language on a reasonable way. that´s why we don´t have problems like this...


the other fact is that government affairs or places have sights only in portuguese to force Immigrants to understand our language or they will have problems. so we don´t show "Court House" but instead we have sights showing "Fórum" and the Judges don´t speak any other language besides portuguese, our rule is "my country, my language. this is a portuguese speaking country so keep your language on your house, outside speak our language"
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#30 nucklehead

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Posted 23 August 2013 - 09:07 PM

Oh my freakin gawd,you got a coffee instead of a chocolate because you have a bad accent. Call the civil liberties, call the human rights, CALL THE MEDIA!!!

In honor of The Eagles latest tour I offer you this gem

I turn on the tube and what do I see
A whole lotta people cryin' "Don't blame me"
They point their crooked little fingers at everybody else
Spend all their time feelin' sorry for themselves
Victim of this, victim of that
Your momma's too thin; your daddy's too fat

Get over it
Get over it
All this whinin' and cryin' and pitchin' a fit
Get over it, get over it

You say you haven't been the same since you had your little crash
But you might feel better if I gave you some cash
The more I think about it, Old Billy was right
Let's kill all the lawyers, kill 'em tonight
You don't want to work, you want to live like a king
But the big, bad world doesn't owe you a thing

Get over it
Get over it
If you don't want to play, then you might as well split
Get over it, Get over it

It's like going to confession every time I hear you speak
You're makin' the most of your losin' streak
Some call it sick, but I call it weak

You drag it around like a ball and chain
You wallow in the guilt; you wallow in the pain
You wave it like a flag, you wear it like a crown
Got your mind in the gutter, bringin' everybody down
Complain about the present and blame it on the past
I'd like to find your inner child and kick its little ass

Get over it
Get over it
All this bitchin' and moanin' and pitchin' a fit
Get over it, get over it

Get over it
Get over it
It's gotta stop sometime, so why don't you quit
Get over it, get over it



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