- Dunkin‘ employees were fired after dumping water on a homeless man.
- The man was planning to charge his phone and call his mother in the coffee shop.
- The employees were terminated after a video of the incident circulated online.
- The Onondaga County District Attorney is working to determine how to charge the former employees, according to reports.
Employees at a Syracuse, New York, Dunkin’ were terminated after a video of them dumping water on a homeless man was circulated online, Syracuse.com reports.
In a statement provided to the outlet by the Wolak Group, which owns a network of Dunkin’ franchises, elaborated on the decision to terminate the employees involved.
“The employees involved in the incident have been terminated, and we will be contacting the individual in the video to apologise for the negative experience,” the statement said. “We also intend to work with local advocates to make sure that our employees are better educated as to how to engage with homeless individuals and where to direct them in the community for appropriate assistance.”
The situation also gained national attention when local advocates confronted the employees at the Central New York store.
Per Syracuse.com, the man, who has been identified as Jeremy Dufresne, went to the Dunkin’ to charge his phone and call his mother. When the man seemingly slept, the employees poured a pitcher of water on him and filmed themselves doing so.
(This video has been edited to omit profanity) pic.twitter.com/YpaZBaaC5Z
— Spectrum News 1 CNY/S.Tier (@SPECNews1CNY) October 1, 2018
“Dunkin’ has been a part of the Syracuse community for many years, and as the franchisees who own and operate the North Salina Street location, we were extremely disturbed by the behaviour of our employees captured in the video,” the Wolak Group’s statement said. “It not only violated our written policies, but goes against our core values as an organisation – which include creating a welcoming and hospitable environment and treating everyone with dignity and respect.”
The Onondaga County District Attorney William Fitzpatrick said his office is working to determine how to charge the former employees, according to Syracuse.com. The employees could be charged with harassment, but Fitzpatrick also wants the people involved to learn from this.
“Let’s not allow this to become the norm,” Fitzpatrick told Syracuse.com. “That’s the way we treat homeless people.”
Betty Jo Craven, Dufresne’s aunt, told Spectrum News that some of her nephew’s belongings were damaged when the water was poured on him. A GoFundMe set up for Dufresne has raised over $US7,700 as of Tuesday morning, exceeding the original $US150 goal.