Waitress Toni Christina Jenkins Wins Big After Racist Remark Left on Receipt
A Red Lobster waitress, whose customer left her a receipt with a racist slur, has received the tip of a lifetime, thanks to fundraising from online supporters.
Toni Christina Jenkins of Franklin, Tenn., said she was shocked when she saw a receipt on the table with “none” on the “Tip” line and the N-word on the “Total” line.
“I was just stunned that it happened,” Jenkins, 19, said. “It’s not something that you think in our generation would actually take place, so I was just blown away by it.”
After posting a picture of the receipt to Facebook Sept. 10, her story sparked outrage online, prompting a California man to take action. Matthew Hanson, founder of AddictingInfo.org, heard Jenkins’ story and started the online fundraiser, Tips for Toni, that collected $10,749 in place of Jenkins’ non-tip on the bill for $44.53.
“It was about sending a message to racists that Americans aren’t going to tolerate that,” Hanson said. “We raised $10,000 within seventy-two hours. It was really amazing.”
Hanson presented the check on Sept. 30 to Jenkins, who was unaware of the fundraiser.
“I literally screamed. I was so confused,” Jenkins said. “I was just so thankful. I felt so blessed and so honored that so many people came together on my behalf to give this to me.”
Citing a company policy that prohibits employees from posting a guest receipt online, Red Lobster suspended Jenkins with pay after the story went public, but she has now resumed work.