Paula Deen Abruptly Shuts Down Restaurant, Forgets To Tell Employees

Uncle Bubba’s Seafood and Oyster House — the home of Paula Deen’s 2013 racism scandal — has closed its doors, and employees of the restaurant were the very last to know.

The Washington Post reports that those who showed up to their Thursday morning shift at the Savannah, GA eatery were met with locked doors. The Savannah Morning News reported that employees were collecting their severance checks in the parking lot.

The Facebook page of the eatery had just a simple message posted to the top of its fan page:

Commenters put the restaurant management on blast for not informing its employees of the decision to close before posting to social media and shutting the doors.

Deen co-owned Uncle Bubba’s with her brother, Bubba Heirs.

Deen made cringeworthy headlines
when a former employee of Uncle Bubba’s filed a lawsuit claiming she had experienced sexual harassment and racial discrimination while working at the restaurant. In a deposition for the case, Deen admitted unapologetically that she’d used the N-word, which ended up costing her millions in lost endorsement deals.

A statement on Uncle Bubba’s abrupt closing was posted to Facebook:

Since its opening in 2004, Uncle Bubba’s Oyster House has been a destination for residents and tourists in Savannah, offering the region’s freshest seafood and oysters. However, the restaurant’s owner and operator, Bubba Heirs, has made the decision to close the restaurant in order to explore development options for the waterfront property on which the restaurant is located. At this point, no specific plans have been announced and a range of uses are under consideration in order realise the highest and best use for the property.

The closing is effective today, Thursday, April 3, 2014. Employees will be provided with severance based on position and tenure with the restaurant. All effort will be made to find employees comparable employment with other Savannah restaurant organisations.

— Jaret Keller, Deen Spokesperson

The Deen camp has not yet responded to Business Insider with comment.

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