Earlier this afternoon (Thursday, Oct. 22) Katy Tillotson with Redfield’s Tavern contacted Dallas Voice via Facebook messenger — the same way we contacted the restaurant on Wednesday, Oct. 21, seeking comment regarding allegations of anti-LGBTQ statements by two of the restaurants owners — to explain that the Redfield’s Facebook page was taken offline Wednesday after allegations began blowing up on social media “because every minute it was up we were getting another awful comment or review,” she said.
Tillotson then provided Dallas Voice with a prepared statement in response to the situation and with the text of an email sent to employees on Oct. 10 following a staff meeting in which the now-former general manager, a woman named Lindsay, recorded comments by owners Joe Tillotson and Scott Cecil in which they men appeared to tell her they were getting complaints from customers because there were too many gay men on staff and that she was not allowed to hire any more gay men.
(Dallas Voice on Wednesday obtained and publicly posted an audio recording of that conversation. We have since sent the audio file to a sound engineer who has “cleaned up” the recording to eliminate background noise and make the voices easier to hear. We will be posting the cleaned up audio clip soon.)
We are reprinting statement released today and the Oct. 10 email in their entirety here:
STATEMENT OF REDFIELD’S TAVERN
October 22, 2020
Redfield’s strongly denies the notion that it doesn’t want members of the LGBTQ community as its patrons. That is simply not true. Redfield’s proudly welcomes all members of LGBTQ community as customers and is thrilled that gay (and straight) patrons enjoy visiting its premises. Every member of the gay community is welcome at Redfield’s and always has been.
Redfield’s didn’t start off as any particular type of bar, gay or straight. It was started with the simple expectation that it would be a safe and fun place for people to gather, drink responsibly and enjoy a good time. Redfield’s could not be happier that members of the gay community have become loyal customers and cannot thank all of them enough for their business.
We cannot say the following any more strongly: All members of the gay community are welcome at Redfield’s.
Recent comments to the contrary have been taken out of context, blown up on social media and exaggerated for effect. To those offended, hurt or discouraged by any of those comments, we sincerely apologize. It was never our intent to hurt anyone, minimize any customer or cast any dispersion on the gay community. We deeply regret any such impression to the contrary.
To our friends in the gay community, we say come visit Redfield’s and let us show you our hospitality. You’re more than welcome; you’re invited. And we sincerely meant that.
From Joe Tillotson
Date: Octover 10, 2020 at 10:14:41 am CDT
To: Lindsay Schmidt
Subject: Yesterday meeting
I wanted to send this immediately after our meeting yesterday but it seemed like everyone was a little exhausted. I really want to clarify something because it continues to disturb me that the conversation about our staff despite what we say sometimes is mis-labeled or mis-understood. Nobody including Scott or myself or any partner or anyone on our staff cares about anyone else on our staff’s sexual orientation. It is a non issues. This is not to be a subject of our conversation at all regarding them because it doesn’t matter. I know I have said many times that it is not a factor in the hiring process or the evaluation of their job. WE DON’T CARE. In fact I would ask that this thought be totally removed from anyone’s thoughts or conversation because that doesn’t matter AT ALL and is a distraction from what it is want to do with our staff and our business.
We do have certain things we want to and need to ask our staff as standards regarding dress, appearance and work place attitude, customers service and more. We also want a diverse staff that includes an equal representation of men and women. I know we have been delinquent on a staff handbook and certainly that would help. We will work on that this week along with standards for hiring so hopefully we continue to grow and develop the staff we have. We know there is always turnover and the staff is never constant and there is pretty much always a need to be taking applications. I hope this helps and like We said yesterday we want to help and we just need communication to help Provide the best resources for our management!