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Ice cream parlour employee gets fired for accepting a $100 tip, sparking debate

The employee has been working for The Moorhead Freez for the past five years. However, with a generous tip things took a wrong turn.

Ice cream parlour employee gets fired for accepting a $100 tip, sparking debate
Representative Cover Image Source: Pexels | RDNE Stock Project

An unexpected tip is a celebratory moment for any employee in the service industry. But when Emily Svenson, an employee at The Moorhead Freez, received $100 as a tip from a customer, things did not pan out nicely. Her parents shared the incident on Facebook. "This spring our daughter started her fifth season working at the Moorhead Freez. She was recently let go because of a generous tip that a customer left for her," the post read. The parents narrated how their daughter was offered a $100 tip but refused to take it. However, the customer put the tip in the jar anyway and drove away. "At the end of her shift, our daughter's employer was upset and accused our daughter of 'taking' $100 from a customer," they added.

Representative Image Source: Pexels | Karolina Grabowska
Representative Image Source: Pexels | Karolina Grabowska

The parents also attached the notice their daughter received from the establishment two days after the incident on April 24 and got terminated on April 25. "According to the Moorhead Freez policy, it is a violation to accept bills over $20 as a form of payment. There is nothing in the policy about tip amounts," the parents revealed. They concluded the post by saying, "Our daughter appreciates the generosity of the lady who tipped her and feels that this kind lady is in no way responsible for what happened." The employee warning notice posted by the parents explained the reason behind the dismissal.

Representative Image Source: Pexels | Goumbik
Representative Image Source: Pexels | Goumbik

It read, "Emily needs to understand that some of our customers are elderly and could be dealing with dementia or other illnesses that make it hard for them to understand their actions." The note added, "No one in their right frame of mind tips $100 at a place where every menu item is under $12." It continued, "As an employee of The Freez, it's your responsibility to protect the reputation of the establishment." They even said that if the customer had been dealing with some issues and the family found out they had been allowed to leave $100 as a tip, the ice cream parlor would be seen as a place that takes advantage of the elderly. "Looking out for our customers should take priority over the opportunity to get a tip," the note stated.


After getting different reactions from the people, the ice cream parlor shared a post on Facebook. The post read, "Ice cream makes people happy. Social media bullying- not so much. We did not terminate the adult at-will employee of 5 years for accepting a tip. There's more to the story." However, the establishment refused to share any more details about the event, stating it as a personal matter. They believed that if the parents were posting on behalf of their adult daughter, they hadn't asked the right questions of her. They specified, "We are a small business built on a strong work ethic and Moorhead values. Our values and expectations reflect those of the community and our customers."


Jeff Comeford commented, "It's fascinating that an adult's helicopter parents are making a fuss over their daughter's termination. If the employer actually violated laws, the daughter could sue. But instead, the parents are looking to hurt the business rather than ask their daughter the tough questions. Props to the Moorhead for standing their ground and not getting into the mud with a former employee's parents."

While Atlanta Swenson wrote, "So perhaps the owner should check to see if that customer was an elderly one with dementia before firing her employee. Perhaps she was someone who really appreciated Emily and her coworkers, who did a good job. I doubt any other food establishment would fire someone for saying they couldn't accept the tip and then the person put it in the tip jar anyway! You see examples of waiters getting big tips all the time." 


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