Cornish pub alleged to have turned customer away after mistaking facial palsy for drunkenness
A Coventry man who has a facial palsy and Moebius Syndrome was refused service at the weekend in what he says is a clear case of ‘facial discrimination’ – and Changing Faces is now asking local venues to say they’d be happy to ‘#ServeAlex’ on his next visit to Cornwall.
Alex Barker visited the pub in Falmouth, Cornwall, on Saturday evening [11 July] and despite only having had one bottle of beer, says he was told he wouldn’t be served as he was ‘under the influence’.
Incensed, he returned the following day to speak to the manager of the pub and to explain the reason for his appearance. “The manager was more interested in watching the tennis and refused to engage in conversation or apologise,” said Alex, who recorded a video of his experience on YouTube.
Chief Executive of Changing Faces, Dr James Partridge OBE, said:
Cornwall’s beaches and stunning scenery attract more that four million visitors a year, and as many as 40,000 of these tourists will have a condition, mark or scar that affects their appearance. The Equality Act offers protection to people with disfigurements, and it may be that the pub has breached that law. The pub’s management, and the wider hospitality and business community in Cornwall, have a responsibility to make sure that everyone is made to feel welcome.
The charity is encouraging venues across Cornwall to embrace ‘Face Equality’ and tweet to say that they’d be proud to #ServeAlex when he next visits the county.