BADEN, Pa. — A mother in Beaver County, Pennsylvania, is heartbroken, claiming her son was kicked out of Walmart because of his disability.
Buddy, 24, is 6-foot-2 and nonverbal with special needs, but he communicates with noises that can sometimes get loud.
His mother told WPXI that while he and his service worker were inside the Walmart in Baden, they were approached by a worker who asked them to leave. Tammy Sheets said an employee who claimed to be a manager asked them to leave because of the noises her son was making.
“She (the service worker) said, ‘Are you serious?’ Because she was shocked. And he said, ‘If he is going to continue to make those noises then yes,’” Sheets said.
Sheets doesn’t know if her son understood what happened, but she said he cried afterward. She called Walmart’s corporate office and filed a complaint. She also called the American Civil Liberties Union.
WPXI reached out to Walmart. A spokesperson said they are aware of the situation and that this was a misunderstanding. Walmart officials claim the employee did not ask them to leave the store.
“I don’t know if he was sad or embarrassed or both, but that hurt me as a mother. … I’m here, I’m supposed to defend him,” said Sheets.
Walmart updated its statement Wednesday, and the full comment is below:
“Our associates and customers reflect the diverse communities we serve and our doors are open to everyone. This was an unfortunate misunderstanding, and at no point did we ask or tell these individuals to leave or exit the store. Our management team has experience serving customers and family members with autism and working to ensure they have a positive experience in the store.”
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