A Chick-fil-A restaurant in Pennsylvania has banned all children under 16 from staying inside without an adult, announcing that young diners now need chaperones because of their “unacceptable behaviors.”
The restaurant said that when “groups of unaccompanied children and teens” come to eat, they often are loud, leave garbage, disrespect employees, damage and steal things, and pose traffic hazards outside the restaurant.
The post on Facebook said that on Saturdays and no-school days, children and teens usually walk over to the restaurant after being dropped off for several hours at a “local bounce park.”
“Employees are laughed at, made fun of and treated rudely,” the post said. “Employees are cursed at and ignored when they ask the children and teens to change their behavior or leave.”
“Food and trash are often thrown around and left on the tables, chairs, and on the floor,” the post continued. “Tables and restrooms are vandalized. Decorations are stolen.”
Describing that as “not a pleasant experience,” the restaurant said all future diners 16 and younger must be accompanied by an adult. Otherwise, they will have to leave directly after purchasing food.
The restaurant thanked and apologized to young patrons who have “acted appropriately,” but maintained that its “blanket rule” extended to them as well “due to the numerous extreme behaviors of many of your peers.”
The Chick-fil-A location also had a message for parents in the community.
“We are not blaming you,” the Facebook announcement said. “Children and teens are learning to navigate the world free from supervision and often push the boundaries. We simply can’t let them push those boundaries anymore at our restaurant. We encourage you to talk to your children and ask about behaviors they have seen and perhaps participated in.”