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Man sues restaurant after being asked to prepay for his meal

An Elmer's Restaurant in Vancouver is being sued by Brian Eason, who says he was discriminated against

A black man has filed a $100,000 (£65k) lawsuit against an American restaurant for discriminatory practices.

Brian Eason claims he was asked by his waitress to prepay for his breakfast at Elmer’s restaurant in Oregon each time he placed an order while white diners were not.

“I was kind of curious about it and said ‘Well, is that new?’ And [the waitress] said ‘Yes, we had a few walk-aways and my boss asked me to ask for prepayment,” Eason told The Oregonian.

Eason didn’t think anything of it, he said, until he later ordered another drink and the waitress again wanted prepayment.

“I said ‘This is kind of odd that I have to prepay every time I order my food and drink,'” Eason recounted. “She said, ‘I think it’s discrimination and my boss is here, and she’s forcing me to have me do this.'”

Eason finished his meal and left the restaurant, but returned shortly after to ask some white customers if they had been asked to do the same - they hadn't.

Eason said that after he spoke to the white customers about whether they had to prepay, he still wasn’t sure if he was going to do anything about it. But he couldn’t sleep that night and his family encouraged him to take action, he said.

“My office is right down the street there,” Eason said. “It’s a constant reminder of ‘They don’t want me in there.'”

The suit seeks $100,000 in damages because Eason has “suffered loss of sleep and feelings of racial stigmatisation.”

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