AMC fires three employees after incident during ‘Harriet’ screening in Metairie

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AMC Theatres has fired three employees after an incident happened during a screening of “Harriet.”

A lawyer representing the 504 Queens, a nonprofit organization, mailed a letter to AMC on Nov. 7, detailing the incident, WDSU announced.

According to the letter, 15 members of the charity claimed they were discriminated against after three employees publicly profiled them during the screening of the film.

The letter details multiple incidents of employees interrupting the screening to ask different members of the charity to verify their ticket purchases and seating assignments.

According to the letter, two different workers and a kitchen staff member approached the group during the two-hour film.

At one point, one of the employees stopped the movie and turned the lights on during the film, prompting others people attending the movie to demand one of the 504 Queens members exit the screening, according to the letter.

“You mean to tell me a kitchen employee can stop a movie, and also, turn on all the lights to embarrass me? And to be aggressive with me in that manner? It was like the 1800s coming back to my face in 2019,” said one member.

After the film, members of the charity approached management to describe the incident.

The letter claims that management offered them free tickets to a movie but ultimately refunded the group’s tickets after they explained they no longer wanted to see films at the theater due to the experience.

The charity asked that AMC remedy the situation by doing the following:

  • Give free “Harriet” tickets to all public and private high school students in Orleans and Jefferson parishes to educate them about the life and legacy of Harriet Tubman
  • Donate all profits from AMC Clearview Theatre’s Black Friday sale to the nonprofit 504 Queens. Those funds would be used to purchase holiday meals for people in need.
  • Provide mandatory anti-racism and anti-oppression training for all AMC theater staff
  • Issue a written apology to the charity about the incident.
  • Donate movie passes to 504 Queens for its 200 members to take young girls in their mentor program to movies next year
  • Investigate and reevaluate AMC’s practices, polices, training and supervision around checking ticket stubs in theaters.
  • Provide mandatory customer service training to AMC theater staff about protocol and policies.
  • Terminate the theater employees involved in the incident.

AMC responded to the charity’s letter, complying with the list, including the termination of the employees involved in the incident.

Kevin Connor, AMC’s General Counsel and Senior Vice President, elaborated on the eight demands and called them ‘healing actions.’

WDSU-TV

AMC Letter to 504 Queens 

WDSU-TV

AMC Letter to 504 Queens 

WDSU-TV

AMC Letter to 504 Queens

The letter from AMC also apologized for the incident.

High school students from public and private schools, in Orleans and Jefferson Parish, can attend a free showing of ‘Harriet’ on Wednesday, Nov. 20 and Monday, Nov. 25.

The free showing is is at all three AMC Theaters (Clearview, Elmwood, and Westbank). A student ID or a report card is sufficient for free entry.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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