Customers and supporters donated nearly $3000 to a Black Ashburn, Virginia, waitress who received a note from a couple claiming not to tip Black people.
On Saturday, Jan. 8, Anita’s New Mexico Style Cafe waitress Kelly Carter said a couple in their 20s left a message on the bill that reads: “great service don’t tip Black people.” The customers allegedly wrote the incendiary statement at the bottom of the $30.52 bill prior to leaving the restaurant after they had brunch.
In an exclusive interview with NBC Washington, Carter told reporters that she did not know what sparked the racially charged comment because there was no indication of irregular behavior and nothing out of the norm.
“It was just total shock, that’s all I can say,” Carter says. “I looked at the receipt three times is what I did ’cause I was shocked. Because [I’ve] never, never [being] a server, seen that.”
The waitress has been working at the restaurant for years and has become one of the establishment’s most valuable workers.
“I was appalled. But it is kind of in line with the political landscape, unfortunately,” Anita’s president, Thomas Tellez, tells NBC Washington. “It’s disheartening; I’m outraged.”
Subsequently, Loudoun County NAACP President Phillip Thompson got ahold of the receipt and shared it on social media, where it picked up national traction.
“Let’s just put it out on social media and let social media deal with it,” Thompson says. “I think the pressure from that will deal with the situation better than what we can do at the NAACP.”
Hatred will not be tolerated and we will not keep quiet. This has been confirmed and did happen per Mgr @ Anita's in Ashburn. pic.twitter.com/UKaLCaKf9h
— Loudoun County NAACP (@NAACP_Loudoun) January 8, 2017
In the days following the national exposure, organizer Brandon Ellis started a Youcaring fundraiser with the initial goal of raising $2000. But over a 5-day period, Ellis and supporters raised $2863 as of this report. Customers also have donated funds at the restaurant since then.