Woman says restaurant fired her from job after she shaved her head
A Winnipeg woman says she was fired from her restaurant job after shaving her head.
Stephanie Lozinski shaved her head as a show of support for her uncle who was dying from cancer.
Lozinski says she didn't tell her employers at the Sawatdee Thai Restaurant in St. Boniface about her plan to alter her looks.
Once she did, one of the managers let her wear wigs or cover her head with a scarf for a few weeks. But another manager had a different opinion.
"He didn't like the way I looked and it wasn't a good fit for their restaurant and they didn't need me to come in for my shift the next day," said Lozinski.
CTV News tried contacting the owners of the restaurant, but they could not be reached Thursday.
A sign posted outside the restaurant said it was closed and would re-open the next day.
Lozinski took her case to the Human Rights Commission, but officials there told her she didn't have a case based on the grounds of discrimination because shaving her head was her choice.
In order to be valid, a claim would have to show discrimination based on sex or a disability, said the commission.
The Manitoba Restaurant Association said employers have the right to fire someone based on their appearance.
"In this case they decided that this was not the direction they wanted to go in. They would have that decision to make," said Scott Jocelyn from the Manitoba Restaurant & Foodservices Association.
The association said restaurants should have outlined policies on appearance.
But, Lozinski said that wasn't the case at Sawatdee.
"I think they need to tell you in advance when you get hired…and I think if no one's giving you any kind of warning, they should have at least let me continue working there until my hair grew back," she said.
Lozinski, meanwhile, said she plans to look for work elsewhere now.
- with a report from CTV's Karen Rocznik