A Maryland mother says her family was told to leave an Outback Steakhouse because her 4-year-old son with special needs was being too loud

Carlo Allegri/ReutersOutback Steakhouse
  • A Maryland mother said her family was asked to leave an Outback Steakhouse restaurant recently because her son with special needs was being too noisy.
  • Amanda Braun wrote on Facebook that her four-year-old son has a neurological disorder known as childhood apraxia of speech.
  • The company that owns the Outback Steakhouse chain apologised to the family for the incident and will implement more training, a spokesperson told INSIDER.
  • Braun told the TODAY show that the company officials seemed “sincere and apologetic,” and had agreed to make a donation to a charity of her choice.
  • Visit INSIDER’s homepage for more stories.

Company officials from the Outback Steakhouse restaurant chain apologised to a Maryland family after a manager told them to leave a restaurant because their four-year-old son with special needs was being too noisy.

The boy’s mother, Amanda Braun, wrote in a widely viewed Facebook post on August 5 that the manager approached their table roughly 5 minutes into their meal and told them he’d received a “noise complaint” about the boy.

Braun said her son was born with a neurological disorder known as childhood apraxia of speech, which affects much of his communication and behaviour.

“He is a very energetic kid with much to say, however when he speaks his words are unclear,” she said.

Braun said the manager offered them $US20 of credit to use at the restaurant at a later date.

“He said that he was very uncomfortable coming to our table to tell us that but unfortunately we needed to finish our meals and leave,” Braun wrote. “I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. I was in total shock!”

‘A family friendly restaurant’

A spokesperson for Bloomin’ Brands, the company that owns the Outback Steakhouse restaurant chain, told INSIDER in a statement that officials have been in touch with the family and personally apologised over the incident.

“We strive to make sure all guests feel comfortable and welcomed in our restaurants and we fell short,” the statement said. “We’re learning from what happened and training our team so we can better serve our diverse guests.”

Braun wrote that she felt the restaurant had discriminated against her son, and that she was appalled by the restaurant’s treatment towards a child with special needs.

But later, Braun told the TODAY show that the chain’s executives had been “very sincere and apologetic” when they discussed the incident with her, even offering to make a donation to the charity of Braun’s choice.

She chose the 2019 DC Walk for Apraxia, and an official called it “an amazing idea.” Braun added that she wasn’t personally angry at the manager who asked her family to leave.

“He made a wrong decision. We’re all humans and we all make mistakes,” she told the TODAY show. “I’m happy with the way everything turned out. Outback took a negative situation and turned it into a positive.”

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