MARYSVILLE, Wash. - A pregnant woman wearing a crop top says a Washington restaurant denied her service because her baby bump was showing.
The server said the restaurant has a "no shoes, no shirt, no service" policy that’s linked with health code regulations and anyone wearing a crop top would have been asked to cover up. But the customer doesn’t buy it.
Charisha Gobin said she stopped by Buzz Inn Steakhouse in Marysville, Washington, with her family Sunday night in a black crop top T-shirt and a long skirt.
“The waitress/bartender stopped us and said, 'I'm sorry, you can’t be here in that shirt.’ I said, ‘Are you being serious with me right now?’ And she said, ‘Yep, you can't be here,’” Gobin said.
Gobin is seven-and-a-half months pregnant with twins -- a boy and a girl.
“Just because my belly was bigger and sticking out. But had it been anyone else, I don't think there would've been any problem whatsoever,” she said.
After the incident, she posted a photo of what she was wearing on Facebook, writing, "I was just denied service at the Buzz Inn on State Avenue in Marysville for my outfit. I'm violating the health code."
The server confirmed she told Gobin the crop top was a health code violation but didn’t explain why. Gobin says she didn't stick around to hear an explanation.
“I was livid. There was no way I was going to stay there,” she said.
KIRO 7 spoke with the Buzz Inn server off camera, who further explained that she asked Gobin to cover up because the restaurant has a no shirt, no shoes, no service policy. She also said the top Gobin was wearing didn’t cover enough to count as a shirt.
The server said she would've asked anyone else in the same top to cover up.
Gobin said she's never heard of a crop top not counting as a shirt.
“I was wearing a shirt; it had sleeves. I didn't even have cleavage showing,” she said.
Gobin said she feels like she was body shamed.
“It’s pretty ridiculous I was shamed in the first place and had to drive across town to eat,” she said.
Gobin said she didn’t have any problems at the next restaurant.
Her post on social media has hundreds of shares, and Gobin said the response has been overwhelmingly positive.
“I was very surprised by the response,” she said. “I think that says everybody pretty much agrees -- I wasn't out of bounds or out of line in any way.”
She said this restaurant has lost her business but isn’t letting the incident bother her.
“Our bodies aren’t just toys, they’re for a purpose, and I think it’s a beautiful purpose,” she said.
Buzz Inn Washington corporate sent KIRO 7 a statement via Twitter, saying:
“We sincerely apologize for the misunderstanding and will cover with all staff as to how to not overly enforce a rule that is intended to make all guests feel comfortable. Our apologies for the misunderstanding. The server in question has been with our company and a great employee for almost 20 years and was trying to use her best judgement (sic) and by no means was trying to be demeaning to the guest again our sincere apology for misunderstanding.”
The company did not answer if anyone wearing that crop top would’ve been asked to cover up or explain how the shirt violated health code.
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