A young gay couple are calling for a boycott of a Gyro shop in Chicago after the pair were asked to leave for hugging in the store.
Kendall Anderson and Peder Sevig were at Big Boy Gyros in the north side of Chicago, across from their high school, Lane Tech.
After sharing a hug, the cashier reportedly verbally assaulted them.
'Your Kind Are Not Welcome Here': Gay Couple Says They Were Kicked Out Of Big Boy Gyros For Hugging www.youtube.com
"And we walk in there, we put our stuff down and we're just like talking and stuff and then the guy at the counter yells at our two friends who were hugging. And then he said two guys can't do that. If it was a girl and a guy, that's ok, but like not two guys and we were like all really shaken for a second," said sophomore Lyla Stern to Fox 32 Chicago.
The cashier in question denied he was an employee of Big Boy Gyros when CBS Chicago approached him.
"We're just customers," he said.
TO MY CHICAGO PPL: I want to let you know of stuff going at Big Boy Gyros on Western near Addison, across the stree… https://t.co/OugJAnGTY6— 击 SELENA 击 (@击 SELENA 击)1557794544.0
Big Boy Gyros this is a big no no. This employee needs to be fired & U should b ashamed that U employ some1 that wo… https://t.co/DmVtBidS3W— Cindy (@Cindy)1557872962.0
@BigBoyGyros done fucked up. #cancelled https://t.co/iedi80NgdS— Angie McMahon (@Angie McMahon)1558035894.0
Chicago people, don’t go to Big Boy Gyros anymore due to a homophobic staff member. https://t.co/P7PKD28UGO— Kamrah (@Kamrah)1557924141.0
Hi @BigBoyGyros, this is Alex with @BlockClubCHI. I reached out over the phone earlier asking to speak with a manag… https://t.co/daT0935lKe— Alex V Hernandez (@Alex V Hernandez)1557878519.0
However, Lane Tech is standing behind its students.
"Dear Lane Tech Family," they said in a statement:
"Earlier today we were informed of an incident involving some of our students at Big Boy Gyros, 3541 N Western Ave. An innocent display of affection was shared by two young students which prompted a restaurant staff member to shout homophobic phrases at our students. When our students proceeded to leave, he made it a point to share that "they" (LGBT+) were not welcomed.
"As a school, we are disheartened because our students were treated with disrespect and made to feel unwelcome. As a community, we stand strong and we want to make it clear that Lane Tech does not stand for discrimination of any kind. We will not tolerate hatred and will not support an organization that promotes hatred of any kind. We support any students, staff and community members that choose to not support Big Boy Gyros. This incident will be addressed in person by Lane Tech's administration and any questions or concerns can be sent to Gabriela Escobar at Gbescobar@cps.edu."
Lane Tech students call for boycott of Big Boy Gyros after they say a worker there made homophobic comments.… https://t.co/CbaPrsr3wS— Block Club Chicago (@Block Club Chicago)1557957649.0
What if we had a gay orgy at big boy gyros 🥵😌— Gerard👼🏼 (@Gerard👼🏼)1557896089.0
#TrumpsAmerica Kendall Anderson says he's still rattled by what happened to him and his boyfriend Peder Sevig at th… https://t.co/O9wIj9uPse— QtheMic (@QtheMic)1558092328.0
@BigBoyGyros. Tell me this with all our young ppl have to deal with, this didn’t happen!?! https://t.co/sSnQ11eown— Forever 23 (@Forever 23)1557839427.0
Okay Twitter do your thing. https://t.co/q7D0YvYyfR— Arnold Layne (@Arnold Layne)1558046770.0
"Pretty unanimously, like, people are not going to support Big Boys anymore," said Lane Tech senior Aster Smith.
"I'm actually pretty proud about my school's handling of it. Lane Tech, especially in recent years, has always been a very supportive institution of the students."
SPEAK OUT: There was a homophobic incident @BigBoyGyros this week that happened to a couple of my son's friends. I… https://t.co/C70WFHvovs— Bonnie (@Bonnie)1557942871.0
The young men, Kendall Anderson and Peder Sevig, were with a group of friends at Big Boy Gyros, where they shared a… https://t.co/zRWbR8T1ww— Brody Levesque (@Brody Levesque)1558016256.0
I tell straight people not to hold hands/kiss/hug in public all the time. Especially when I'm with my nephew-I don'… https://t.co/4dx2SfTC6r— Totally Fucking Gay (@Totally Fucking Gay)1558033274.0
Hey, don’t make the haters rich. Cancel @BigBoyGyros https://t.co/F5Y6NwiLkB— Liliana (@Liliana)1558037819.0
fuck big boy gyros— Chinfist (@Chinfist)1557891342.0
The boycott is ongoing.
The store is reportedly ignoring all requests for comment.