This Bar Is Under Fire For Posting A "No Means Yes" Sign

A bar in Toronto, Canada has issued an apology after sparking outrage over a sign posted in the bar that read, "No Means Yes."

On Sunday, 24-year-old Katii Capern shared a photo of the sign on social media, calling out Locals Only for putting up a sign that casually promotes rape.
“They’re trying to be edgy, but in doing so they are just straight up promoting rape,” Capern told the Toronto Star. Capern told the Star that she had seen the sign while out at the bar with friends, and tried to get in touch with the bar to complain. When her phone calls and emails went unanswered, she posted a photo of the sign to Facebook.

Her post prompted others to take to social media to post problematic signs they had seen at Locals Only In the past, including "Too naughty to say no."
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Locals Only issued an apology on Facebook on Sunday, calling the sign "disgusting" and "derogatory," promising to fire the employee responsible.

"It has come to our attention that while unsupervised, a staff member of Locals Only Toronto made a sign within our establishment that is disgusting, derogatory, and insensitive towards a serious issue that we in no shape or form condone," the statement read. "We are deeply saddened, shocked, and appalled that a trusting member of our staff would do such a thing, and we are taking the appropriate measures to immediately terminate this staff member's employment."

The statement also said that the bar takes responsibility for the sign, and will reissue a training course to educate workers on appropriate practice and policy in the workplace.

"Most importantly, we extend our deepest apology to anyone who may have been affected or offended by this," the statement continued. "It is unfathomable and completely disheartening to think that we would ever have to be writing something like this, as we take extreme measures to ensure the safety of our patrons in our establishment at all times."

Toronto-based group Sexual Assault Action Coalition confirmed in a Facebook post that Locals Only's owners had reached out to the group for guidance.

"I think they are being accountable and working toward educating and empowering their staff,” Viktoria Belle, the group’s co-founder, told the Star. “It’s small steps toward changing the culture already created within the bar itself. Once you work from the inside out and make genuine shifts toward zero tolerance it’s the beginning of something that has a lot of impact.”

Given rape culture's prevailing attitudes towards women who are assaulted while intoxicated, it's good to see this bar taking steps to ensure the safety of patrons.
If you have experienced sexual violence and are in need of crisis support, please call the RAINN Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).
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