Amusement park workers say complaints about manager’s racist remarks went ignored

HUNTERSVILLE, N.C. — Employees at a local amusement park walked out after they said a manager repeatedly made racist comments and their complaints were ignored.

Alyssa Faustia told Channel 9 she worked at Frankie’s Fun Park in Huntersville for more than two years and during that time, she claims one manager made racist comments toward her and other Black employees.

“The manager said I had nappy hair like Whitney Houston so he called me ‘nappy-head,’” Faustia said. “This manager also said we looked like a bunch of monkeys getting ready to get whipped.”

Co-workers Dajah Austin and Jordan Guine said they had similar experiences. All three claim they told another manager about the incidents, but nothing was ever done.

On May 22, the group said they tried another approach. Employees wrote down their negative experiences on notecards, and Faustia said they spread them across the break room table.

“Then Jordan called the GM to the break room to talk about it, and he just said, ‘If you guys walk out, there’s no coming back.’ So we all clocked out and walked out,” Faustia explained. She claimed more than a dozen other employees walked out with them.

“I was really in tears because it’s like, wow, they really do not care about us,” Austin said.

“It was a pretty good job, so it was tough,” Guine said. “I had to walk out fighting my tears, and I’m not a guy that cries. It was a little painful seeing nothing would change.”

Channel 9 reached out to Frankie’s Fun Park for a comment and spoke with owner Doug Godley and Chief Operations Officer Jason Buckley. While they’re both based in different cities, they said they both visit the Charlotte location regularly.

“We never heard one complaint of any of this before they walked out on Saturday,” Godley told Channel 9 on the phone. “They never contacted our human resources department, not one complaint.”

Godley said he’s spoken with the management staff at the Charlotte location. While they deny the allegations, he said any member of management would have been willing to have a conversation about the claims, had they known sooner.

“We would have been glad to have any kind of discussion, meeting, anything at the appropriate time. But to do that when there’s a park full of guests, it isn’t the time to have the discussion,” Godley said.

Buckley agreed.

“I personally think it would have been handled differently had they come to us sooner or not stopped in the middle of their shift to protest about these claims.” Buckley said.

He added that since the walkout, Frankie’s has received more than 100 one-star Google reviews with negative accusations. He said Google is in the process of removing them.

Now that they are aware of the allegations, they said they are looking into them.

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