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Black College Student Identified as N-Word on Campus Dining Hall Receipt


A black student at the University of North Texas was referred to by the n-word on a meal receipt from the one of the on-campus dining halls.

Communications major Chelsea Shaw posted an image of the receipt in a tweet sent Tuesday afternoon. She captioned the image, “I need answers…”

After posting the offending receipt, Shaw and others began to tweet at University of North Texas President Neal Smatresk–demanding answers and the closure of Krispy Krunchy Chicken. Shaw’s demand was later semi-formalized by way of a press release issued by attorney Justin A. Moore.

That press release reads, in part:

On April 17, 2018, Chelsea Shaw, a student at the University of North Texas (“UNT”), was leaving her last class of the day, and before she left campus, she decided to stop by the Student Union to get food. She placed her order at Krispy Krunchy Chicken in the Union, and upon receiving her order, Ms. Shaw noticed on her receipt that instead of being identified by her name she was identified as “[n-word].” In response to this, Ms. Shaw spoke with the manager, but nothing was done. Up until now, neither Krispy Krunchy Chicken nor UNT has done anything to rectify this unconscionable act.

The press release continues, noting, “For many African Americans in this country, there is a pervasive tension that is felt when patronizing public institutions of higher learning–and even restaurants–that aren’t historically dedicated to accepting us as students or customers. Situations such as the one that happened to Ms. Shaw only lend evidence of how touch college can be outside of the classroom for minorities.”

Moore goes on to cast doubt on UNT’s commitment to inclusion and education, and writes, “The fact that minority students at our universities are not safe from experiencing this type of humiliation is troubling. UNT has a job to do, and it is to make its campus accessible and safe for all students, regardless of color. If Krispy Krunchy Chicken continues to exist on UNT’s campus amidst such an egregious act then student safety is clearly not a priority.”

Law&Crime left a voicemail with Moore for an additional statement but no response was forthcoming at the time of publication.

The retail establishment isn’t likely to close, but the person who labeled the receipt has been fired, according to a tweet sent by Smatresk. He wrote, “Our Mean Green family values respect and prides itself on inclusion. It is completely unacceptable and not who we are as a community. We acted immediately to identify the person responsible and that person has been terminated.”

The former employee has yet to be publicly identified.

In an email later sent to students, Smatresk elaborated on the incident. He wrote, “From listening to discussions in social media, it appears as though assumptions are being made about the race of the person responsible. It is important to know that both the customer and employee were the same race, and regardless of other societal views it is my belief that the use of this term is never OK.”

In earlier press reports, UNT declined to comment on Shaw’s demand for the restaurant to be closed. Law&Crime reached out to UNT’s communications department for comment, but did not receive a reply.

[image via screengrab/Twitter/Chelsea Shaw]

Follow Colin Kalmbacher on Twitter: @colinkalmbacher

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