Two employees at a Dunkin’ Donuts eatery in Syracuse, New York, have been suspended after one dumped water on a homeless man who had nodded off as his cell phone was charging. Then both workers laughed about it.
The video, apparently captured Sunday night and posted on social media, showed a young man with his head down on a table in a mostly empty store, when a worker pours a pitcher of water on him.
“How many times I’ve got to tell you to stop sleeping in here,” said the worker, who added a profanity. The employee and another person not in the video can be heard laughing as the man gathered up his wet belongings.
The person shown in the video was identified on GoFundMe as Jeremy Youngs. A fundraiser set up to help him in the wake of the encounter already surpassed $1,100 by Monday afternoon.
A homeless advocate stopped by the store to object to the man’s treatment and threatened a boycott if management didn’t address the issue, according to Syracuse.com.
The scenario prompted a demonstration of roughly 20 people outside the store, with one protester carrying a sign reading “Homeless Lives Matter,” according to a local radio radio station.
Reached for comment, Dunkin’ Donuts emailed a statement to CBS MoneyWatch attributed to Kimberly Wolak, chief operating officer of Wolak Group, which owns about 85 Dunkin’ Donuts stores in New York, New Hampshire and Maine. Her statement read in part: “We were extremely disturbed by the behavior of our employees captured in the video. It not only violated our written policies, but goes against our core values as an organization.”
Both workers involved were suspended pending an investigation, added Wolak, who also said the business would be reaching out to the individual in the video to apologize and would work with advocates to ensure its workers are better trained on how to engage with the homeless.