Owner pledges to ensure all staff are made aware of religious exemption to ‘no-hats’ rule
On December 1, the Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund (SALDEF) received a formal apology from the Richbrau Brewing Co. restaurant in Richmond, VA for denying Mr. Hansdip Singh Bindra entry to the restaurant with his turban.
On November 24, 2006, Mr. Bindra, a member of the Sikh faith, sought entry to the popular restaurant in Richmond with members of his extended family. Mr. Bindra was denied entry due to the restaurant’s “no hats” policy. Mr. Bindra attempted to explain that he was not wearing a “hat,” but rather a turban, a mandated religious article of faith for Sikhs. “There were all sorts of people there, and yet I was being singled out solely because of the way I looked”, said Bindra. “I wear a turban everyday as a Sikh, it’s who I am.”
In the apology letter addressed to Mr. Bindra, Michael Byrne, Director of Operations at the Richbrau restaurant noted: “It is with this letter that I would like to extend to you an apology for our doorman enforcing the “no headgear policy” literally.” Mr. Byrne continued, “I have contacted the Richmond media and reaffirmed our policy of the traditional headgear policy exception to our staff. I trust you will feel welcome on your next visit to Richbrau Brewing Co.”
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