A Black woman has filed a complaint against Whataburger after a disagreement for wearing a Black Lives Matter mask while on duty.
Ma’Kiya Congious filed a discrimination complaint with the Texas Workforce Commission and called for a boycott of Whataburger, according to The Washington Post.
In a statement released by her attorneys, Congious is asking the public to “boycott Whataburger for 90 days to see what actions the company takes to show that ‘Black Lives Matter’; the company should allow Black Lives Matter masks; the CEO should say ‘Black Lives Matter to Whataburger’ on social media; the company should provide more implicit bias training, and the company should celebrate Juneteenth starting next year.”
On Aug. 4, Ma’Kiya Congious went to work wearing a face mask, which is required by all employees while on shift for safety measures. Congious had worn the Black Lives Matter mask before without any feedback from her managers. However, when a customer complained about the mask, she was reprimanded.
A White woman confronted Congious and told her that the company should not allow her to wear the mask.
When confronted by a manager, Congious reportedly recorded video of a conversation where the manager told her, “Whataburger wants you to wear a mask that has no opinions whatsoever on them. You’re entitled to your personal opinions, that’s fine. But at Whataburger, we don’t want to portray them because some people may be offended. This is big business. … Whataburger doesn’t want to get into anything political because we’re just hamburgers and fries.”
Congious asked if she could put in her two-week notice for resignation and she said the manager told her that she could leave immediately. Congious attempted to stay at the restaurant to get clarification on the mask policy, but police were called and she was forced to leave the property.
Whataburger reps claim that she was not fired, but they accepted her resignation.
She was eventually able to get a copy of the mask policy that went into effect on May 1. The policy does not mention a ban against political statements.
Following the incident, Whataburger released a statement that read: “Whataburger supports racial equality. This is simply a matter of enforcing our uniform policy. Whataburger employees are provided company-issued masks that comply with our policy and adhere to CDC and local government guidance.”