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California Restaurant Creates Shorthand Code for Harassment

Homeroom restaurant in Oakland, California has come up with a unique way for its employees to report inappropriate behavior from customers.
The Management Alert Color System (MACS) has three tiers: yellow, orange and red. If a food server perceives a “creepy vibe” from a customer, that is a yellow. When a customer says something to the server that is questionable, such as a comment about the server’s appearance, that would be orange. Red is when a customer engages in conduct that is clearly inappropriate such as “Hey, you look super sexy in that” or intentionally touches the server.
When a member of the staff perceives conduct that meets any of the three codes, they simply report the color. They are not required to provide any details about the experience that they are having. The managers have a protocol for what they do in response to the color report. For yellow, the employee may decide whether the manager should take over the table. For orange, the manager automatically takes over. For code red situations, the customer is asked to leave. The MAC system was created in response to staff reports that they were uncomfortable telling managers about these situations. Homeroom’s chief executive reported that incidents of code red have gone down since implementing the system.