US Teen Forced to Wear “Gaytard” Name Tag at Work

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Sixteen year old Tyler Brandt of Yankton told reporters at local news station KELOLAND that he quit his job after his manager at Taco John’s forced him to wear a name tag bearing the homophobic slur “gaytard”.

Brandt said that he feared he would lose his job if he disobeyed his manager, who made him wear the name tag all day.

“I would always stay behind the till so they couldn’t see the nametag, I didn’t want them to see it, but even though they couldn’t see it, he [his manager] would still call me by the name across the store and customers would notice.”

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Brandt went into the store on Tuesday with his boyfriend and resigned from his position, and kept the name tag as evidence.

Yankton Taco John’s manager John Scott denied the allegations to Yankton publication Press & Dakotan, stating that Brandt chose to wear the name tag.

“From what I understand, they were all joking around,” Scott said. “Everyone has a nickname here, and he wanted a nickname. [Gaytard is] what he picked for a nickname. He wasn’t forced to wear the name tag. He asked the manager to make that name tag for him. He handed it to him. He didn’t tell him he had to wear it. He put it on himself and created the situation. He said the manager forced him to do it. The manager didn’t force him to do anything.”

According to the Associated Press, Brandt and his father are considering suing the restaurant.

“I don’t think that anybody should have to put up with any kind of discrimination. It’s not fair.” he said.

Taco John’s CEO Jeff Linville issued the following statement to KELOLAND News:

“At Taco John’s, we believe everyone should be treated with dignity and respect. We take any accusation of workplace harassment very seriously. The type of discrimination that reportedly took place recently in the Yankton, South Dakota restaurant is deplorable. Such actions will not be tolerated by our company. Taco John’s is committed to doing all we can to make certain nothing like this happens again in any of our restaurants.”

Tyler Brandt’s interview with KELOLAND News can bee seen below.

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