The Miami Herald news outlet has reported that a Jordanian-American who visited South Florida last week [mid-May 2019] for his anniversary has filed a lawsuit against a Fort Lauderdale hotel arguing that its staff discriminated against him by evicting him and his fiancé without just cause.
Reportedly, the incident took place at The Westin Fort Lauderdale Beach Resort where Rami Ziyadat had booked an eight-day stay for $2,606.
The news outlet reported that this was Ziyadat’s third stay at the hotel with his fiancé, Taylor Schneider.
However, according to a discrimination lawsuit filed in federal court in South Florida, on 24 May 2019 a hotel employee reportedly had noticed Arabic words tattooed on Ziyadat’s forearm and called security.
According to the lawsuit, the employee had told Ziyadat he didn’t “look like you belong here”. They were then reportedly evicted from the hotel after the manager explained the couple were being “inappropriate” and had “violated the hotel policy,” the lawsuit alleges.
This was denied by Ziyadat and his Fiancée, who, nevertheless were then “marched out of the hotel flanked by security and subjected to incredible humiliation as the other hotel guests stared at the couple surrounded by security,” the herald reported.
The Westin general manager Danny Estevez declined to comment on the lawsuit, but said his hotel aimed to provide an inclusive environment. However, he was reported as saying that diversity and inclusion are part of the fabric of our [the hotel’s] culture and operations.”
Ziyadat and Schneider reportedly filed suit on 31 May 2019 against the hotel and its parent company, DiamondRock Hospitality Co.