HR · 31 May 2018

Bar owner quick to defend employees over “slut-shaming” Facebook review

Owner Paul Davies and two members of MoneyPenny’s bar staff.                                                  Credit: The Newcastle Herald

After being named and shamed on Facebook by a customer, a small business owner is quick to defend his bar and staff.

An online reviewer claimed that the employee’s skirts were too “revealing” and made them feel uncomfortable whilst they were dining in the restaurant.

The post read: “Maybe you should dress your staff in better uniform, trying to relax with a quiet drink, and staff are bent over in very revealing skirts where you see their business. Very inappropriate. Certainly not professional.”

Owner of MoneyPenny in Newcastle, Austrailia, New South Wales, Paul Davies said he was disappointed, stunned and frustrated when he spotted the post.

In response to the post, owner Davies replied: “The only thing inappropriate here is you publicly slut-shaming someone in 2018.”

Davies told the Newcastle Herald: “’The fact that people rarely address anything with you face-to-face and go straight to the internet is so disappointing, but I guess it speaks volumes as to [the] current state of our society.”

Davies encourages his staff to wear whatever they chose to work, with the exception of kitchen staff, who dress according to safety regulations.

“I believe for customers to love a company; your staff need to love it first. For me, I know I feel much more comfortable wearing my own clothes so why shouldn’t they enjoy the same freedoms?

“If I can give my staff a confident mindset before they have even left the house, I’m already one step of the way towards providing an enjoyable work environment in which people want to spend time in.”

Davies told Business Advice: “I have been very humbled by the huge groundswell of support we have received from our amazing regular customers and also future customers. Hopefully it might make someone think twice before taking a cheap shot at someone’s appearance or livelihood.

When asked what advice Davies has for other business owners he added: “I can’t speak for them, but for me, my staff are the reason I get out of bed in the morning. People often say ‘oh it must be nice to work for yourself’, the truth is, I work for my staff. My staff and our customers are my boss every day of the week and without them, there is no business. I would never be able to look them in the eye again if I didn’t back them each time not only as a boss, but also a friend.

A bar staff employee at MoneyPenny, Ella, 21, said that the review was unnecessary. “It’s nice to be able to wear what you want to and not have a separate wardrobe for what you’d usually wear”.

The diner has since deleted the review from Facebook.

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ABOUT THE EXPERT

Carly Hacon is a reporter for Business Advice. She has a BA in journalism from Kingston University, and has previously worked as a features editor for a local newspaper.

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