Holyoke restaurant owner speaks out after woman claims gender di - Western Mass News - WGGB/WSHM

Holyoke restaurant owner speaks out after woman claims gender discrimination

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HOLYOKE, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -

Western Mass News has an update to a story we first brought you earlier this month.  

A woman who applied for a job at a Holyoke Chinese restaurant said she was denied employment because she's a woman.

The Real China restaurant on Northampton Street in Holyoke reached out to Western Mass News wanting to respond to a claim by Karen Jasionkowski.  

Jasionkowski said she applied for a job as a delivery driver at Real China, but said she was told females need not apply; this is what Jasionkowski told Western Mass News on April 4. 

"I said, I'm interested in the delivery driver job. And she said, no girls. I said, what?," said Jasionkowski. 

Jasionkowski protested outside Real China claiming gender discrimination.  

On  April 4, Real China told Western Mass News off-camera they do hire women for other positions, but do not hire female drivers.  

Hui Yen, the restaurant owner's son and part of the business said that was a misunderstanding.

"It's business choice. We don't hire her because we don't think she could do the job good. We hire every every kind of people,  don't matter you woman or boy or you girl or you old people we still hire you," said Yen.  

Yen said Jasionkowski appeared angry and was not a good fit for the position.  

"So if you do interview you should know how to talk to people nice, people will give you a chance to do this job," Yen continued.  

Carlos Rivera of Holyoke showed up to support Yen and Real China, and said his wife also worked for Yen.

"While she was working here she did do delivery. She did mornings and nights," said Rivera.  

Rivera noted his wife eventually switched to cashier.

"Certain experiences made her uncomfortable to where I had to accompany her because she felt safer because of the amount of money sometimes or the area of the town," Rivera added. 

Yen said nighttime delivery can be risky, and noted they have and will hire females for the position but, he said, every night side driver they've hired has either quit or asked to be reassigned.

Real China did eventually hire a delivery person who is male. They said aside from Jasionkowski, only males have applied. 

 Western Mass News reached out to Jasionkowski on Friday who told us at this time, she is not pursing legal action. 

Copyright 2018 Western Mass News (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved. 

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