A transgender woman says she was kicked out of a restaurant bathroom for refusing to show ID
Charlotte Clymer was enjoying a night out for her friend's bachelorette party when things took an awful turn.
With the drinks flowing, the music booming and everyone having a good time dancing, Charlotte, a trans woman, decided to use the bathroom at Cuba Libre, a restaurant in Washington DC. But she claimed that she was hounded by staff at Cuba Libre to present ID to use the bathroom, and when she refused, she was kicked out of the restaurant.
In a Twitter thread, Clymer recounted her experience, saying that both an attendant and the restaurant manager singled her out, claiming there was an apparent law that required her to have 'female' on her ID in order to use the women's restroom. Clymer works for the Human Rights Campaign, so she knew this claim was a complete lie.
No other members of the bachelorette party were questioned in such a manner.
"I go into a stall to do my business, and I hear him walk in and search for me in this busy restroom full of women. He is doing everything but opening the stall doors. I ignore him, and after a few moments, he leaves. I do my business, wash my hands, and walk out.
On the other side of the door are the attendant and the manager, who says it's D.C. law that you must have 'female' on your ID to use the women's restroom. I tell him he's wrong and there's no chance I'm showing him my ID. There are people crammed into this hallway. It's busy."
Despite showing the manager the law in DC that showed she was being discriminated against, Clymer says the man was skeptical, and eventually, this woman who was just enjoying a time out with her friends was asked to leave.
"He treated me like I was being irrational, glanced over the text and said 'that's incorrect'. He continued to refuse to show this imaginary law he was citing and threatened to call the cops. I told him he should absolutely call the cops. Please do. He then said I need to leave."
With Clymer's original tweet racking up over 9,000 retweets, it was only a matter of time before Cuba Libre caught wind of the incident that had occurred within their walls, and maybe only a matter of time before the restaurant issued a public apology for Charlotte Clymer's treatment that night.
"We are extremely sorry for the incident that occurred at our restaurant last night. As a rule, we support safe bathrooms and welcome guests of all gender identifications. Clearly, our staff did not do so last night and treated you in an unacceptable manner. We are immediately re-training our entire staff to ensure this does not happen again."
While Clymer says she's heard personally from the owner of Cuba Libre, she's generally been unimpressed with their response so far. Recounting how upsetting the ordeal was for her, Clymer expressed her surprise and worry about her treatment in the American capital.
"It was really scary. I was caught off guard. I work on these issues all the time. I just felt naive. I can't imagine what folks who are LGBTQ go through in cities that don't have non-discrimination protections and folks who don't have privilege, who aren't white, that don't have a base of supporters to rally around them."
Charlotte Clymer says that the one thing she's learned from this situation is the need for more non-discrimination laws so everyone is protected from this kind of treatment.