The hostess allegedly suggested that their vaccination cards were fake and used a racial slur
The restaurant has, however, denied all allegations of racism and said that “nothing about this incident suggests race was an issue.”
In a video that was shot by an onlooker and shared online last Thursday, a restaurant hostess, who is white, is seen being attacked.
Security footage of the incident shows three women, who were with several other people, being ushered into the restaurant after they show proof of vaccination at the entrance.
Then, several minutes later, three men arrive to join the group, but only one of them shows documentation that he has been vaccinated.
A little later, the video shows the three women joining the men outside as a fight breaks out.
Justin Moore, the lawyer for the three women, claimed that the hostess had suggested that the vaccination cards were fake and used a racial slur. He was quoted by the New York Times as saying that the dispute was “mutual combat.”
He said: “The hostess begins spouting out derogatory comments and speaking with two of the women; they claim that the N-word is being spewed out.” He added: “They also heard the hostess say, ‘Yeah, you guys can leave my restaurant,’ or something very aggressive like that.”
When one of the three women heard that, “she turns around and addresses the hostess. She tells her: ‘This isn’t your restaurant. You’re just a staff member here. Please address us with respect.’”
Mr Moore also said that the New York City restaurant hostess assaulted the three women.
Carolyn Richmond, an attorney representing Carmine’s, denied that racism was involved.
Ms Richmond told the New York Times: “The idea that anyone would become violent as an employee performs this necessary function is anathema to New York, the hospitality industry and New Yorkers in general.”
She said: “As all of the women showed proof of vaccination they were all permitted to enter and were in fact seated inside.”
A demonstration is scheduled on Monday outside Carmine’s in New York City to protest the treatment of Black patrons, reports said.
Hawk Newsome, the co-founder and chairman of Black Lives Matter Greater New York said: “Restaurants are using vaccine mandates to enforce their racist beliefs and excluding Black patrons.”
New York City’s mayor Bill de Blasio mandated that restaurants allow only indoor dining to those who show proof that they have gotten at least one dose of the Covid-19 vaccine. The City began enforcing this rule on Monday.
The three women were released with a court date of 5 October.
The police have said that the three women allegedly punched the hostess repeatedly, leaving the 24-year-old bruised and scratched. She was later taken to a hospital.