DENVER — A family is furious after their teenage son ordered a pizza from Papa John’s and instead was delivered a racial slur.
The teen went to the Papa John’s on Green Valley Ranch Boulevard and Tower Road about 4 p.m. Tuesday to apply for a job and eat dinner. After his sausage and pepperoni pizza came out of the oven, Adam Duncan said he is never going back.
“I won’t be seeing Papa John again,” he said.
It’s not because of the pizza. The order label on the pizza box said the “N” word, where it should have said Duncan’s name.
“Disappointed. Disgusted,” the boy’s mother Dionne Duncan said. “It’s uncalled for because it’s not my son’s name.”
The teen said he placed the order in person, was the only customer and the employee who took his order never asked for his name.
“It just feels bad because I eat there all the time,” he said. “That’s how they see me. So racism still exists.”
His parents want to know how the racial slur ended up on the pizza box. Duncan and her husband Adam went to the Papa John’s location, hoping it was a mistake.
“We started questioning the employees in there to see if anyone who worked there had that name that was on the box,” Dionne Duncan said. "And they said no.”
“This action is inexcusable and doesn't reflect our company values," Papa John's spokesman Peter Collins said in a statement. "After an internal investigation, we identified the cause of the issue and the employee is no longer a member of the Papa John's team. We sincerely apologize for the insensitive behavior of this individual.
"We have spoken with the customer and apologized for this incident. The former-employee that created this offensive label was African-American and claims that he knew the person ordering the pizza from high school. We unequivocally do not condone this behavior and have terminated his employment."
The teenager said he does know the employee, but the two are not friends. The family said it does not matter whether the two know each other or not. They believe the “N” word is never OK to use.
“It’s not a game. It’s not a joke when it comes to your work place or just anywhere,” Dionne said.
The Duncans are happy the employee responsible for the slur was fired. The want further action taken against the manager who was on duty.