Entertainment And News

Fast Food Worker Is Fired For Being Autistic — 'You’re Asking Me To Go Home Because I Told You I Had A Disability?'

Photo: @iliftfordoughnuts / TikTok
screenshots from fast food worker's tiktok in which she was fired for being autistic

A fast food worker and TikToker has left many online shocked after she posted a video that showed her work supervisor seemingly retaliating against her for disclosing her disability.

Employment discrimination against those with disabilities is shockingly common, despite the protections the Americans with Disabilities Act provides. And after seeing her video, many are urging the TikToker to lawyer up.

A fast food worker says she was fired for being autistic.

Nowadays, most of us are aware of the protections provided by legislation like the Americans with Disabilities Act for workers with disabilities. These include workplace accommodations that help people with disabilities do their jobs, most of which are basic changes that are easy and inexpensive to implement.

RELATED: Server Reveals She Was Fired After Receiving $100 Tip From Customer

Nevertheless, discrimination in the workplace against people with disabilities is a major problem, and Andria, a fast food worker and TikToker known as @iliftfordoughnuts on the app, said she was a victim of such discrimination during a recent altercation at her job in which she disclosed that she has autism after being reprimanded for her interactions with other employees.



Andria said she was sent home after requesting workplace accommodations for her autism.

"I was asked to have a talk on how my boss and coworkers perceive me," Andria wrote in her TikTok caption. "I explained that I struggle with social cues so I don't understand perception but with some [accommodations] I can work on it."

Misunderstanding common social dynamics is a frequent struggle for people with autism, and the nuances that come with workplace dynamics can often prove confusing.

But Andria said her employer was not willing to work around that. "I was immediately asked to clock out," she wrote, despite the fact that she was "never late. No customer complaints. Work was done well and on time. Never written up."

The footage that Andria uploaded makes it clear that this was more than a simple understanding. "I just want to be clear," she was heard saying to her boss. "You're asking me to go home because I told you I have a disability." Her supervisor repeatedly evaded the question, simply repeating her instructions to Andria to "log out" and "clock out."

RELATED: Mom Called ‘Cruel’ For Making Autistic Nephew Leave Her Daughter’s Birthday Party

People on TikTok were shocked by Andria's video, and urged her to get in touch with a lawyer.

"I'm asking you if I'm being sent home related to the fact that I said I told you I had a disability, and you immediately said, okay, we need you to get home," Andria continued in the video. "So I just want to document for the ADA and for my lawyer."

Still, her supervisor refused to discuss it, nor would she clarify whether Andria was indeed being fired or simply sent home early.

Many on TikTok felt like Andria's instincts were right on track. When the corporate office of her employer, Pizza Hut, showed up in the comments of her TikTok asking for clarification, commenters immediately jumped into action urging her not to say a word.

Photo: @iliftfordoughnuts / TikTok

Some, however, weren't on Andria's side, pointing out that she was being confrontational with her supervisor. But others wondered how Andria was supposed to respond to a pretty clear case of discrimination.

"People complaining about you being 'confrontational,'" one person wrote, "you have every right to be? She's actively discriminating against you?" And in the eyes of the law, at least, they're absolutely right.

RELATED: Woman Is Accidentally Included In A Group Text That Says She'll Be Fired In 3 Weeks

According to the ADA, people can only be fired for being autistic under very specific circumstances, and cases of workplace discrimination against the disabled are on the rise.

It's frequently said that it's illegal to fire people with disabilities, but under the Americans with Disabilities Act, that's not strictly true. According to the Department of Labor, disabled workers can be fired if their disability creates a safety concern or their disability precludes them from fulfilling their duties even with reasonable accommodations.

Neither seem to be the case in Andria's situation, however, and according to the Autism Research Institute, the workplace accommodations for autistic workers are very simple changes like schedule modifications and adjustments to supervisory methods.

Still, according to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, ableist discrimination in the workplace is shockingly common, accounting for more than one-third of all employment discrimination cases in 2022, and autistic people experiencing high rates of unemployment.

RELATED: A Mom Went To Visit Her Son At Lunch & Caught Him Receiving An Unusual Punishment For Being 'One Minute Late' To School

And according to the Society of Human Resources Management, a trade organization for HR professionals, some 70% of people with disabilities don't feel comfortable even disclosing their disability to HR or management like Andria did, for fear of precisely the type of retaliation her video seemed to show.

Perhaps there's more to the story of why Andria and her supervisor had a falling out, but her video made it pretty hard to dispel the charge that disability discrimination was at play — especially since Andria gave her repeated opportunities to clarify the reason.

RELATED: Mom Paid $80 For A One-Day Summer Camp For Her Son And Was Asked To Pick Him Up One Hour Later

John Sundholm is a news and entertainment writer who covers pop culture, social justice and human interest topics.