A restaurant in the Brewster town of Massachusetts, US had to shut down for a day after its employees faced a series of rude behaviour from customers. The situation had turned so dire that a few employees of the farm-to-table restaurant Apt Cape Cod even cried after after these rude interactions. So to bring some respite to their employees Felt Castellano and his wife Regina Felt Castellano, the head chef and co-owner, announced through Facebook that their restaurant would close for the day to treat its employees to a “day of kindness.”
In their social media post shared last week on July 8, the restaurant owners mentioned that even though many of their guests and patrons treat them with kindness and understanding, there has been an “astronomical influx" of those customers who swear at them, threaten to sue, argue and yell at their staff, making the team members cry. The restaurant said in its statement that such behaviour by customers “is an unacceptable way to treat any human.”
Considering how the frequency of rude behaviour has affected their employees, Chef Regina and co-owner Felt said that they decided to take the day and give the staff time to deep clean the restaurant, train, and treat their staff to a day of kindness. The Facebook post mentioned that the restaurant will be open for breakfast the next day, but it urged its customers to remember that many of its staff are young, and it is their first job, or summer job to help pay for their college tuition. The post also mentioned that the post-pandemic they are still grappling with the situation and making changes due the increase in business volume, and other logistics. Apt of Cape Cod also mentioned that they are “not trying to ruin anyone’s vacation or day off.”
Many other restaurants have come out with similar concerns after the Facebook post was shared by Apt Cape Cod owners. Commenting on the post, another restaurant called Mooncussers Tavern wrote, “We are so sorry to hear this has happened, although not surprised. We stand in solidarity with you and truly believe you made the right decision. Wishing you all the best for the rest of the summer.”
A customer at Apt Cape Cod commented, “Regina and Brandi I am so sorry. Your staff has always been so polite and caring. Please let them know at least how much I respect them and wish I was still on the cape and could support you and the team!”. Find the restaurant’s Facebook post here.
Speaking to The New York Times, Felt said that the change in behaviour is a recent development because people were quite kind during the pandemic last year. Regina told the publication that the string of unruly behaviour has surpassed her expectations and is nothing like what she has seen in her experience.