On Thursday, a woman was told she was "too big" to receive a pedicure from a nail salon based in Houston, Texas. The woman believes she was discriminated against by the employee, who admitted to denying her service.
Tina Lewis, who had visited the Rose Nails salon a week prior to the incident to get her eyelashes done, had returned to receive a pedicure. Instead, she was told by an employee, Marie Bui, that the salon chairs were not big enough for her to sit in. Lewis, who gets her nails done every two weeks, has never had an experience like this before, she told KTRK.
"I was like, 'Can I get a pedicure? And what chair do I sit in?' And [the employee] was like, the chairs were not big enough for me to sit in. And I was like, 'Are you serious? So you’re saying that I'm too big to sit in a chair?'" Lewis said.
Bui admitted that she informed Lewis she would not be able to get a pedicure due to her size.
"I said, 'I'm sorry I cannot serve you because my spa chair is very small,'" Bui said, according to ABC7 Chicago. Bui adding that she did not intend to sound mean or rude, but claims that another customer had damaged one of the salon chairs, and Bui believed it was caused by that person's weight.
According to KTRK, the salon owner said that they had the right to deny service to Lewis, adding that the chairs cost hundreds of dollars and they are unable to afford repairs to damaged chairs.
“Someone needs to go down there and let them know that if they do have [weight] requirements, that they need to be posted on the door,” Lewis said.
Lewis said that the employees at the salon are lucky that they told her this, and not a woman who may have low self-esteem. Despite remaining confident in herself, the interaction left Lewis shocked.
"It was... very disrespectful,” Lewis said. “To me, I felt like it was discrimination."
However, the salon did not break any law. Unlike discriminating against a person's race or gender, which is protected under the law, weight discrimination is not illegal. In fact, in 49 states, it is even legal to terminate an employee for their weight.
Rose Nails did not answer Yahoo Lifestyle's phone calls to comment on the incident. Yahoo Lifestyle was unable to locate Tina Lewis for comment.
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