A Florida eatery is at the center of controversy after its new policy bans kids from entering its doors.
Hampton Social, a neighborhood beer and pizza spot in Tampa implemented the "NO CHILDREN" rule — which is plastered in large red font on its door — after a few incidents led the owner to deem it a liability.
"It's been hard," owner Troy Taylor told Redbook. His business has been open almost three years and he's served hundreds of great families, he said.
But after seeing "adults come in and drinking and letting the kids just run around… [there were] a few that ruined it. From a liability standpoint, we couldn't really handle it," Taylor said.
He insisted that the kids weren't the issue; their parents are to blame. "Kids are going to do what they think they can do, unless someone tells them they can't," he said.
When local parents heard the news of Hampton Social's new policy, they wrote reviews online to slam the restaurant they once enjoyed.
"No children. All caps. The biggest font, at the top of the door. All after gladly accepting money from families for two years. Rude," one Yelper wrote accompanying a one-star review. "The owner is entitled to his opinion. 'No Children Please' would suffice. Have some class … Seems that they're banking on alcohol sales. Won't be getting any from me."
"Now that children are banned, I don't see any reason to go there," another added.
When a photo of the sign was sent to a Tampa Baby Moms Group on Facebook, the debate gained steam, but many backed Taylor's decision.
The group's original poster liked the idea, citing that the restaurant's social media pages focus mainly on beers and adult beverages.
"Not only am I totally fine with them not allowing children but I honestly find it very responsible of them to not allow them to a place that's primary function it to serve beer," she wrote.
"I like it!" another added. "Sometimes hubby and I will have a date night and we will go to a restaurant where we have to listen to other people's kids crying and carrying on. Its nice to have an adult only option."
Another offered an alternative solution to the sign's potentially offensive wording.0comments
"I think the term 'NO CHILDREN' in all caps comes across a little...I don't know...harsh? Perhaps '18 and up only' or 'Adults only' wouldn't rustle so many feathers," a user wrote.
Taylor reiterated to the group's poster that it was "a hard decision and I'm sure it's going to hurt our business, but I just couldn't live with the fact that a child might get hurt at Hampton."