Hong Kong resident alleges discrimination against elderly wheelchair user at Hang Heung Bakery Cafe in Sheung Wan

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Hang Heung Bakery Cafe

23rd May 2024 – (Hong Kong) A recent incident involving a Hong Kong resident and an elderly wheelchair user at Hang Heung Bakery Cafe, located at 247 Des Voeux Road Central, Sheung Wan, has sparked allegations of discrimination against the establishment’s staff. The customer claims that the wheelchair user was allegedly obstructing the pathway, prompting a staff member to remark, “It’s blocking our business.” The incident has left the customer outraged, denouncing the act as discriminatory towards people with disabilities and wheelchair users. Netizens have expressed their discontent with the staff’s attitude, stating, “They should treat everyone equally!”

The incident unfolded when the Hong Kong resident, accompanied by family members, including an elderly wheelchair user and a domestic helper, visited the bakery cafe after completing some business at a nearby law firm in Central. The wheelchair user expressed hunger, leading the group of five to decide to dine at the cafe. Upon arrival, they noticed an unoccupied table for four near the entrance, which had a “Reserved” sign on it. Believing that the table was spacious enough, they intended to occupy it.

However, a staff member, described as a “long-haired lady with a hint of a rural accent,” expressed displeasure, claiming that the wheelchair would obstruct the passage for other customers. Another staff member then suggested they could sit inside the restaurant. The customer was willing to comply and move to the suggested area to avoid inconveniencing the staff and other patrons. Surprisingly, the “long-haired” staff member reiterated that sitting there would still obstruct the passage. In response, the customer asked, “Don’t you want our business?” Later, the domestic helper revealed that she overheard the “long-haired” staff member making a comment to another staff member, which further intensified the situation.

Netizens expressed their disapproval of the staff’s behaviour, with some remarking, “They should treat everyone equally!” and “The restaurant owner should be grateful for the ‘long-haired’ staff member, as she’s helping them close down early.” Some even suggested filing a complaint with the Equal Opportunities Commission. However, others speculated that if the restaurant owner had been present, the situation might have taken a different turn, with the staff member’s attitude undergoing a complete transformation. On the other hand, some customers who frequent the cafe with young children and baby strollers stated that they have never encountered any issues, saying, “I dine here one to two times a month, and the service and attitude have always been satisfactory.” Some individuals pointed out that the customer’s behaviour was also problematic, stating, “If they put a ‘Reserved’ sign, why would you still occupy the table? Don’t they have manners? The staff needs to eat too!”