DETROIT – A discussion about race will be held later this month at Downtown Detroit’s Checker Bar after an incident between an employee and a patron.
“He started arguing with one of my other friends and it turned into a really big situation,” Wendall Fleming said. “He called her a word I can’t repeat right now."
Fleming said he was at the Checker Bar with friends in June when there was an issue with a bartender. He posted about the incident on social media, and the employee was fired.
“That’s when we did our due diligence -- followed up, let the employee go the very next day,” said Matthew Pollard, the director of operations at Grand Trunk Hospitality Group.
Fleming decided the incident was the perfect chance to open up a bigger discussion about race.
“I figured this was a great opportunity to explore this deeper,” he said.
So, Fleming reached out to Charity Dean, the director of Civil Rights, Inclusion and Opportunity Office in Detroit.
“Wendell really said that he wanted to have a serious conversation about race,” Dean said.
Let’s Talk About Race, a discussion that will center around the history and roots of racial discrimination in Detroit, will be held at the bar.
“I’m not expecting the world to change overnight, of course, but I am looking forward to everybody starting to come together,” Fleming said.
Let’s Talk About Race will be Nov. 21 at 3:30 p.m. at the Checker Bar at 124 Cadillac Place.