Tuesday, May 01, 2012

Today I received the "open letter" below:

Dear Campus Community:

As the leading foodservice provider in North America, our commitment to diversity is reflected in the companies, partnerships, customers and associates that make us who we are. Collectively, we have developed a positive impact within the commercial foodservice industry and academic communities we serve through our dedication to diversity and inclusion.

Chartwells brought the Blue Agave Mexican Grill to campus by popular demand from students.  The opening was anticipated by the campus since the return of spring break.

In no way was the theme associated with the grand opening meant to be negative in any way. If the promotion used to celebrate the opening of this new eatery offended anyone, we sincerely apologize. It was not our intent. The excitement surrounding the opening was shared by the many guests who waited in line for the grill to open in order to enjoy the quality global foods we are truly proud to prepare and serve. We hope that the concept can live up to the expectations of the many cultures it proudly represents.

We would like to share with you our Diversity and Inclusion Report which shows our sincere commitment to the diverse clients and customers we serve. We have a very active Diversity and Inclusion Action Council (DIAC) which supports the needs of our diverse associates, clients and guests.  The Chartwells DIAC is dedicated to attracting, retaining, and developing a workforce filled with associates from a variety of backgrounds.  We respect all individuals and embrace their differences, similarities, backgrounds, life experiences and the cultures they represent.

We are grateful for the confidence and trust our customers place in us every day. We will do our best to make you feel that trust is warranted.

Chartwells Higher Education Dining Services

Naturally, this sparked my curiosity, so I checked out the most likely source for additional information, and found this. I'm sort of vanilla myself over such controversies (although I definitely could have predicted this outcome), but I really dislike non-apologies of this flavor: "If the promotion used to celebrate the opening of this new eatery offended anyone, we sincerely apologize." Sorry if you were offended? When I  say something like that, I am not really intending to apologize.

Last toleration class on Thursday -- another discussion topic presents itself! A campus example such as this can change an esoteric point in the reading into something more relevant and understandable. I'm thinking specifically of this debate between Heslep and Wagner about PC and cultural disrespect (my most viewed post ever, interestingly). I think I did not mention Wagner in the old post, but his reaction to Heslep's ruminations boils down to: We should all just lighten up. (So he'd agree with the interviewed student who advised chilling).


Anonymous said...

Just for the record . . . that wouldn't have happened on my watch.

-- JES

howzerdo said...

JES, of that I have no doubt!