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#1 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 12:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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We just got asked to leave a restaurant because our 13 month old did not have shoes on : .

We were at a family brunch, in a reserved area of the restaurant, and DD was finished eating. We let her out of the highchair to walk around and socialize with our relatives. About 30 minutes into her being out of the chair walking a waitress comes in and says the baby either needs to have shoes on or leave the restaurant. I asked why, and she proclaimed that it was unsanitary and that adults and children alike are required to wear shoes. Obviously it's their policy, granted it's one I don't understand, but all the same it's their policy. We didn't have shoes for DD because she never wears them, so we were forced to leave. Frankly, I was a bit embarrassed by the whole situation (I shouldn't have been, but I was, these were in-laws that we see rarely if ever).

Anything like this ever happen to anyone else??
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#2 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 01:02 PM
 
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No but I can see their point. I worked as a waitress in college and lots of times glasses got broken and cleaned up quickly but the floor didnt get "really" swept till closing time. Its a liability for them to have anyone bare foot on the floor 13 months or 13yrs.

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#3 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 01:19 PM
 
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I have to side with the restaurant on this one...but then again, that's one of my own hang ups, public floors are NASTY.
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#4 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 01:28 PM
 
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I've been wondering about this lately and try to keep a pair of shoes in the diaper bag for this reason. The other day we were in Rite-Aid and dd was barefoot as usual and wanted down (or else she would flop and scream in my arms). As she was roaming around, I wondered if anyone would say anything to us. I guess they'd have a right to--it's just as much a safety issue with toddlers than with adults.
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#5 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 01:28 PM
 
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I really don't want to know what could have been on that floor other then bits of glass. If my kids are old enough to be walking on the floor/ground when out of the house then they have shoes of some sort on. At home and in our front yard the kids are mostly barefoot, but out in public I'm too grossed out by the idea of what they could be stepping in. Our front yard might become a shoes required place and a call might go to animal control if a neighbor doesn't start keeping a better eye on her dog!

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#6 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 01:31 PM
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I have to side with the restaurant on this one...but then again, that's one of my own hang ups, public floors are NASTY.
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#7 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 01:40 PM
 
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I wouldn't be comfortable with my child (or anyone) walking barefoot in a restaurant either. If they're not walking around (aka in a high chair the whole time) I'd be fine with it, but definitely not underfoot. But then I dont let my DD walk around a restaurant without me holding her hand anyways because that small they're underfoot, and I would hate to have something spilled/dropped/stepped on them, ya know? when I was a waitress it was all I could do to get from the kitchen to the table with some of the food without dropping it, let alone with a little toddler on my feets.
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#8 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 01:55 PM
 
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At first this sounded ridiculous to me, but now that I read the other replies- its true, public floors are DISGUSTING!
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#9 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 02:03 PM
 
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I can understand asking you not to let her walk around with no shoes on, and personally I agree with that for all the reasons stated, but telling you to actually leave the restaurant was going too far. What if you had a newborn sleeping in a carrier with no shoes on? Would she have asked you to leave then? I think she was being rude to insist that you put shoes on her or leave.
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#10 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 02:18 PM
 
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ds never wears shoes. i'm going to go get some and put them by his bag right now!

we almost weren't allowed to board a plane b/c ds1 (then 9mo) wasn't wearing shoes.

i do keep some socks in the diaper bag though. some play areas have a rule about wearing socks.

it is summer. i don't think to put shoes on the babe.
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#11 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 02:27 PM
 
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If they are put down to walk at the restauant, they should have shoes on.


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#12 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 02:32 PM
 
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I think she could have sat on your lap rather than have to leave. I had one son who could not wear shoes as a toddler, he had a very fat, wide foot and just didn't tolerate shoes. We went everywhere with either slipper socks, slippers or robeez on. We had to have something because of the weather and of course he wanted down to walk too.
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#13 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 03:00 PM
 
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I'm sorry that happened. The restaurant has the right to have this policy, but I agree that it seems a little extreme to ask somebody to leave because a toddler isn't wearing shoes. :

The health issues may not be as dire as people think. We're conditioned to think of walking barefoot as a disgusting thing to do, but some barefoot organizations provide information backing their stance that there is nothing unhealthy about bare feet:
http://www.barefooters.org/
http://www.unshod.org/

Whether or not to walk on a dirty floor should be a personal decision, IMO, and not something to dictate to parents. I don't think it's fair of us to say "children should wear shoes" as a blanket statement. That said, the restaurant owners may have that policy in place to protect themselves from litigation in case a patron steps on a piece of broken glass or something.

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#14 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 03:16 PM
 
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I agree with the above, they didn't really have a right to actually kick you out of the restaurant, policy or not. I've only had to deal with this once. To me, the dirty factor does not really phase me unless I am going to be stepping in pee in a public restroom or something. And for peopel whpo think its unsanitary to walk barefoot, well whats on teh bottom of my feet is also on teh bottom of your shoes. Unless I have some sort of fungus growing on them and walk across your dinner table...... And actually, barefooted people usually have less incidence of infections and such as our feet can BREATHE. I go barefoot EVERYWHERE. BUt for places like that it is more about them protecting themselves due to liability if you step on glass or whatnot. But I am a barefooter as are my kids and I woudl never sue someone if I stepped on something like that cuz its to be expected. You have a right to be barefoot, theer is no true law about it as some people might try to say there is but I am not sure how individual policies work.
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#15 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 03:40 PM
 
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Originally Posted by JBaxter View Post
No but I can see their point. I worked as a waitress in college and lots of times glasses got broken and cleaned up quickly but the floor didnt get "really" swept till closing time. Its a liability for them to have anyone bare foot on the floor 13 months or 13yrs.
This is not thye situation the OP described.

The waitress did not politely come over and tell the mommy that she was worried that the child might get hurt, and that maybe it would be better for the child top sit in some one lap. She told the mommy to put shoes on the kid then kicked them out of the restraunt b/c they didn't have any. When asked for a reason she said that a 13 mo's feet were "unsanitary." :

I sometimes let DS walk around in restraunts either barefoot or in socks if the floor looks clean, and no one ever says anything.

I hope no tip was left.

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#16 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 05:46 PM
 
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My 12 mo doesn't wear shoes, but no way would I let him walk around a restaurant without them. Gross. I personally would entertain him in some other way or carry him.

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#17 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 06:09 PM
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THey were well within their rights to kick the OP out. They are a private institution with rules that are well within the bounds of normal and acceptable.

That's not to say it wasn't ridiculous It would have made much more sense just to ask you to keep the child seated. She's just a baby, for heaven's sake


But, to correct a pp, yes, they do have that right.
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#18 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 06:27 PM
 
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Originally Posted by momuveight2B View Post
I think she could have sat on your lap rather than have to leave. I had one son who could not wear shoes as a toddler, he had a very fat, wide foot and just didn't tolerate shoes. We went everywhere with either slipper socks, slippers or robeez on. We had to have something because of the weather and of course he wanted down to walk too.
ITA. I think they could've asked for her to not walk on the floor, rather than leave. Sorry that happened to you!

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#19 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 06:29 PM
 
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THey were well within their rights to kick the OP out. They are a private institution with rules that are well within the bounds of normal and acceptable.
In states that don't have specific laws restraunts are also within their rights to throw out women who breast feed b/c they have policies that require patrons not to expose the midsection.

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#20 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 07:41 PM
 
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Originally Posted by famousmockngbrd View Post
I can understand asking you not to let her walk around with no shoes on, and personally I agree with that for all the reasons stated, but telling you to actually leave the restaurant was going too far. What if you had a newborn sleeping in a carrier with no shoes on? Would she have asked you to leave then? I think she was being rude to insist that you put shoes on her or leave.
A newborn isn't going to be walking.

Haven't you ever read: "No shirt, no shoes, no service." - It's a restaurants right to ask you to dress appropriately if you are there. It's your right not to patronize them if you disagree with their policies.

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#21 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 08:02 PM
 
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ITA. I think they could've asked for her to not walk on the floor, rather than leave. Sorry that happened to you!

ditto

It sucks when you're trying your best as a mother and someone comes and tells you that you're doing something wrong.

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#22 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 08:06 PM
 
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I don't worry about germs...but broken glass is another story. We've been asked to put shoes on our tots in grocery stores for the broken glass reason. We just carried them and that was that but the policy makes sense to me.
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#23 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 08:16 PM
 
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I can understand.....from a legal point of view, the health dept regulations usually REQUIRE shoes... so they would jave been risking their butts had the health inspector come in....there are no "but it's a baby" loopholes in sanitation laws.

Also, to all the people saying "they could have just asked her not to walk on the floor..." That's silly. If it were an adult, would you be saying that? What if I just carried my 10 yr old son in, should he be allowed to sit at the table in the restaurant, since he's not technically "walking" on the floor? What about my 90 yr old, 80 pound gramma? I could prolly carry her in too.....

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#24 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 10:00 PM
 
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I agree -- it's something the health inspector could close them down for. I'm sorry you had to leave, but I also understand that the restaurant can't take the risk of violating code.

As far as the person who posted that their child "couldn't" wear shoes, and then listed Robeez as one of the things they wore -- aren't Robeez shoes? I'm curious about other people's thoughts on this.
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#25 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 10:52 PM
 
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First of all, I love that a debate has sprung up over this issue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by LynnS6 View Post
A newborn isn't going to be walking.

Haven't you ever read: "No shirt, no shoes, no service." - It's a restaurants right to ask you to dress appropriately if you are there. It's your right not to patronize them if you disagree with their policies.
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Originally Posted by bobandjess99
Also, to all the people saying "they could have just asked her not to walk on the floor..." That's silly. If it were an adult, would you be saying that? What if I just carried my 10 yr old son in, should he be allowed to sit at the table in the restaurant, since he's not technically "walking" on the floor? What about my 90 yr old, 80 pound gramma? I could prolly carry her in too.....
Usually exceptions are made for the very young, and the very old. Do you think a restaurant would kick me out for bringing in a baby wearing a onesie? Probably not, but they might if I came in wearing a swimsuit. *giggles at the thought* Same if I came in wearing just my socks, but I think your 90 year old grandmother, if she was in a wheelchair and wearing just socks on her feet, should be allowed to be in the restaurant. It would be weird if you carried her in, but if that's your chosen mode of transportation, then who am I to argue.

But, the 10 year old is out of luck.
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#26 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 11:42 PM
 
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I can understand asking you not to let her walk around with no shoes on, and personally I agree with that for all the reasons stated, but telling you to actually leave the restaurant was going too far. What if you had a newborn sleeping in a carrier with no shoes on? Would she have asked you to leave then? I think she was being rude to insist that you put shoes on her or leave.
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#27 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 11:47 PM
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I am actully shocked. My childrenn have almost never worn shoes ina any store or restarant they are 2 1/2 and 1 1/2 i never even thought they could get in trouble for it. i just figured their babies i guess the mainstream put shoes on babies and thats who your dealing with. i dont know im just supprised as i have gone 2 1/2 years with no problem

my question is at what exact age do they say a kid needs shoes on obviousley not a newborn but what about a 3 month old? or is it as soon as they walk. what if they are not walking, im sorry this angers me
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#28 of 101 Old 08-18-2007, 11:58 PM
 
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If the restaurant had carpeting it would be pretty weird for there to be glass on the floor. Rarely does a carpet not get vaccumed in a restaurant (nightly)
I have seen babies crawl all over restaurant floors and that is gross...but little one walking without shoes should be jsut fine...unless dirty feet falls under "not fine."
Unless something just happend...then the server could say, "you know we just had small incident and everything didn't get vacuumed up yet...so it isn' safe for her."

but to kick you out...that's crazy. within their rights?...Sure but still crazy.

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#29 of 101 Old 08-19-2007, 02:26 AM
 
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I agree -- it's something the health inspector could close them down for. I'm sorry you had to leave, but I also understand that the restaurant can't take the risk of violating code.
But when asked why the waitress did not say that there were health department regulations she said it wasn't sanitary. Also the OP mentioned that they were in a private room, so who would see.

Beside are there actually any health department out there that require shoes in restraunts? I kind of doubt it considering how many Japanese and Korean restraunts have sections with traditional flooring and mats where you must take off your shoes if you want to be seated there.

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#30 of 101 Old 08-19-2007, 03:55 AM
 
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When asked for a reason she said that a 13 mo's feet were "unsanitary." :
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Also the OP mentioned that they were in a private room, so who would see.

Beside are there actually any health department out there that require shoes in restraunts?
Reread the OP. The waitress did not say the child's feet were unsanitary. She simply said the situation was unsanitary (which is true). If the waitress can walk in and out of the room, so could a health inspector. And yes, many health departments require that ALL patrons wear shoes.

I bet if the child had not gotten down to walk, not a peep would have been said. I'd just get some Robeez second hand to keep in the bag for going out to restaraunts. Just put them on when the babe wants to get down and socialize.

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