Customer | Noncustomer Disturbance Policy

President's Message

My primary concern is the safety of our employees and customers. The purpose of this document is to prepare employees to effectively handle typical customer disturbance situations and situations in which safety is jeopardized, as well the proper utilization of police resources.

Equal Public Accommodation

Employees will provide equal customer service to all individuals regardless of disability, age, race, religion, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, family status, military status, national origin, genetic information and any other lawfully protected class. No employee will bar from entry, refuse to provide service, make derogatory remarks, or treat customers differently based on their disability, age, race, religion, creed, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, family status, military status, national origin, genetic information and any other lawfully protected class.

Non-Escalation Policy

A positive outcome for any interaction with a disruptive customer is our goal. It is therefore vital that you do not engage verbally or react to disruptive customers in a way that might escalate the "situation". Remain calm, do not argue, and never engage physically.

Your Initial Approach

Your initial approach will have a tremendous impact on every interaction. Be friendly! Smile! Greet your customer with a genuine "how can I help you" attitude. A sourpuss restaurant worker is not starting out on the right foot.

Identifying Disruptive Behavior

On occasion, there are individuals whose behavior becomes a detriment to building a steady clientele of regular customers. Some examples of such behavior:

Approaching Disruptive Customers

Again, your initial reaction will have a tremendous impact on the situation. Making proper decisions early will ensure a positive outcome. Whenever you approach such an individual:

Suggestions as to what to say in a quiet, non-threatening tone of voice:

  • Odor: I'm sorry but your odor is disruptive to others, we can't serve you. Alternatively we will package your order for carryout.
  • Panhandling: I'm sorry but you cannot ask others for money or food in here.
  • Luggage and Belongings: I'm sorry but you cannot bring all of those items into these premises. We need to respect the comfort, space and service of all by holding all accountable to this rule.
  • Loitering: I'm sorry but you must place an order in order to remain here; -or- I'm sorry but it's time to leave as you have had your meal and are still here after x period of time. (Use good judgment. There is a difference between someone who remains in the restaurant reading or working on a laptop, versus someone who is just idly hanging around.)
  • Loud/Unruly: I'm sorry but you'll have to be quieter in order to be served.
  • Intoxicated: I'm sorry but you seem intoxicated. You'll have to straighten up before I can serve you.

Taking Further Action

  • This is a warning, I am sorry but you will have to leave
  • I am sorry but I will call the police if you do not leave, stop, etc.
  • Walk over to the phone and pick up the receiver as though you are about to call the police. This may cause the customer to leave without further incident
  • If necessary, call the police using the Non-Emergency Police number

Successful Late Night Customer Handling

Working the 3rd shift, especially on Friday and Saturday can present some challenging situations. The obvious reason is that some customers, especially between the of 2-4 AM, will patronize us after having consumed alcohol. Most customers are just nice people out for a good time. However, some get carried away and become obnoxious or even worse. In most situations, a smile and a sense of humor will go a long way to effectively handling late night patrons. Important suggestions for successful late night customer handling:

  • Break the ice with a smile and ask if they had a good time out tonight.
  • Offer beverages right away and serve those before taking the food order
  • Take the food order and be sure to repeat it back to avoid any misunderstandings
  • Explain that due to how busy the restaurant is, it may take a little longer than usual for their order to be prepared
  • Print the receipt and return for payment as per the pay-in-advance policy on third shift
  • Return frequently to offer beverage refills
  • Return frequently to remind the group that their food is coming.

Late Night Complainers and Agitators

During bar time (typically 2-4 am on weekends), if necessary, rather than allow customer behavior that is too loud, too demanding, etc.:

  • Stop what you are doing no matter what it is and deal with the issue.
  • Speak with authority, but do not yell. Sounding angry or yelling will likely escalate the situation.
  • Say "Sorry... I can't take your order until 'the behavior' stops"
  • Say "Sorry but this behavior must stop or you'll have to leave"
  • Give a refund if necessary if the situation seems to be escalating

Physically Threatening Customer

Safety is our primary concern. Again, the Non-escalation policy referenced earlier must be followed. NEVER engage with a physically threatening customer. If the behavior escalates to physically threatening or violent, retreat to a safe area and dial 911.

  • Calling the Police
  • Non-Emergency Calls
  • If undesired behavior continues after your efforts described in this guide to resolve a situation without police intervention, call the police non-emergency number.

911 Calls

Sometimes, the difference between an emergency and a non-emergency isn't easy to decipher. Ask yourself... is this a life threatening emergency or serious crime in progress? Call 911 for a life threatening emergency or a crime in progress. Examples of a life threatening emergency or crime in progress:

  • An immediate threat to a person or property
  • Screams for help
  • Weapon displayed
  • Gunshots
  • Fire emergency
  • Medical Emergency
  • Excessive Police Calls

The police department is not our private security guard service. Learn to utilize the suggestions and methods described in this guide before resorting to calling the police.

911 Abuse

Our business can be deemed a nuisance if we make an excessive number of 911 calls, 911 calls that are not for life threatening emergencies/crimes in progress, or we hang up on a 911 operator or put one on hold. The city can impose fines or even take action to revoke our business license if we abuse 911.

Police Call Incident Report

Image of Incident ReportFor every police call, whether a non-emergency call or to 911, fill out a "Police Call Incident Report" immediately after the situation is under control. A "Police Call Incident Report" form is posted on the employee bulletin board.

No Panhandling

No Panhandling SignPanhandling takes place when an individual asks for an item of value either silently, by using a sign or a container, or by asking someone directly for money. The City of Milwaukee Ordinance 106 -1.1 prohibits "aggressive panhandling" and panhandling at specific locations such as bus stops, public transportation vehicles and facilities, sidewalk cafes and other locations specified in the ordinance. Violation of this ordinance can result in a fine.

Aggressive panhandling behavior is lawfully prohibited at any location. "Aggressive behavior" means engaging in any conduct with the intention of intimidating another person into giving away money or goods, including but not limited to, intentionally approaching, speaking to or following a person in a manner that would cause a reasonable person to fear imminent physical injury or the imminent commission of a criminal act upon the person or upon the property in the person's immediate possession; intentionally touching another person without consent; or intentionally blocking or interfering with the free passage of a person. "Panhandling" means begging, soliciting, or asking for any item of value.

We don't allow panhandling in the restaurant. While our restaurants serve the public, the restaurants are private property. We have the right to determine allowable entry and behavior as long as we don't discriminate based on race or other unlawful reasons. Of course, your safety and that of others, are always the first priority.

A positive outcome for any interaction is what we want. It is therefore vitally important that you do not "engage verbally" with or react to disruptive customers in a way that might escalate the "situation". Remain calm, do not argue, and never engage physically with anyone.

Text the Manager about Panhandling Individuals

Image of NoticeIf you have a chronic problem with a certain panhandling individual, text the manager the approximate time the person is in the restaurant. We will go on video to obtain pics of the person and use those to post a permanent "Do not enter Posting" where unlawful panhandling needs corrective action on our part.

Keep the Change!  A better way to give . . .

The City of Milwaukee is working with partner charities throughout Milwaukee to encourage people who are struggling to make use of available resources.  If you want to help those asking for money on the street, consider "Keep the Change". When you "Keep the Change", you can help that person make a real change in his or her life. For more information, visit Additional ways you can help:

  • Encourage panhandlers to call or text 211 Impact for resources
  • Make a donation or volunteer at a local non-profit organization, shelter or food pantry
  • Share this message with your friends and neighbors

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