An Italian restaurant in New York is calling foul after it was slapped with a $5,000 fine for sexism from the city’s Commission on Civil Rights. The crime? Giuseppe Bruno, who owns Lower East Side Italian restaurant Sestina, was fined by the City of New York after posting a Craigslist help wanted ad for a “hostess/coat checker” over the summer. Bruno is calling the tactic “a scam,” and is calling on other restaurants to share similar stories, including that of an Upper East Side restaurant that was just fined $5,000 for posting a similar ad looking for waitresses.
“This is an outrage, and more restaurants need to share their stories so this nonsense is stopped,” Giuseppe Bruno wrote to The New York Post. “Someone needs to help these restaurants.”
Laura Kineavy, the Sistina employee who wrote the actual advertisement, said that she didn’t even give a thought to gender while typing it out. The Commission for Civil Rights flagged the ad, and sent two fake emails of interest to Sistina, one from a man, and one from a woman. The fine was issued after the Commission claimed that only the email from the woman was opened. The commission, according to the Post, is not required to issue warnings before it doles out fines.
For the latest happenings in the food and drink world, visit our Food News page.
Joanna Fantozzi is an Associate Editor with The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @JoannaFantozzi