It looks like there is no shortage of cruel people in the world, and they seem to be found everywhere. Recently, a homeless man in New York became the target of someone’s cruel behavior at the outlet of a well-known restaurant chain.
A video went viral on Sunday showing a homeless man sleeping at Syracuse Dunkin’, when an employee of the restaurant dumped water on his head in an attempt to kick him out.
The homeless man, Jeremy Dufresne, who sometimes stops by the Dunkin’ on North Salina Street to charge his phone and get warm, visited the outlet per usual on Sunday night. However, little did he know that he would have to undergo a humiliating experience at the hands of one of the staffers.
A report by Syracuse detailed that Dufresne was charging his phone at the outlet to call his mother goodnight and decided to put his head down for some time. Suddenly, a worker threw a pitcher of water on him to wake him up. The video shows the worker telling the man that he had warned him not to sleep in the restaurant before.
And as if the behavior was not cruel enough in itself, some people – apparently other employees –literally laughed at the plight of the poor man, as heard in the video’s background, per a tweet by Spectrum News CNY.
A video making waves on #Facebook allegedly shows a @DunkinCNY employee mistreating a homeless person — where laughter can be heard in the background. ???? STORY: https://t.co/fruSUmuSgv— Spectrum News CNY (@SPECNewsCNY) October 1, 2018
(This video has been edited to omit profanity) pic.twitter.com/YpaZBaaC5Z
But instead of getting angry, Dufresne, who is reported to be suffering from Schizophrenia, tried to justify the cruel behavior of the employee. He told Syracuse the following.
“He [the worker] probably had some personal problems of his own and needed someone to talk to. And he took it out on someone else, like me.”
Despite Dufresne’s kind response, the public showed zero tolerance toward this disrespectful treatment. Shortly after the video went viral on Twitter and Facebook, people started posting angry comments and called for boycotting Dunkin’ for mistreating the poor man.
“I am so disgusted at Dunkin’ Donuts right now,” said one person on Twitter, while another person demanded from Dunkin’ to suspend the staffers who mistreated the homeless man if they want to retain their customers.
@dunkindonuts #homelessarepeopletoo unless that worker in Syracuse is fired(along with the laughing friend)for dumping water on a homeless man in your store I will not give you any more money. Ever. Shameful and evil,and you hired them— tee mallard (@PartchTishia) October 1, 2018
Homeless advocates also called for boycotting Dunkin’, while many protesters lined up outside the North Salina Street outlet, demanding the suspension of all the involved employees, as reported by WKTV.
When approached for comments earlier, neither Dunkin’ nor the franchise owner, The Wolak Group, responded. However, the company later announced that all the employees involved in the incident have been suspended.
Per a follow-up report by Syracuse, Kimberly Wolak, Chief Operating Officer of The Wolak Group which owns the store on North Salina Street, said in a statement that they have been “extremely disturbed” by the behavior of the concerned employees. She also stated the following.
“It not only violated our written policies, but goes against our core values as an organization–which include creating a welcoming and hospitable environment and treating everyone with dignity and respect.”