Pregnant mother says Subway employee denied her medical request: “This is fast food, not fine dining”

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IOWA -- An Iowa mother says she was treated unfairly at a Subway restaurant because she is pregnant.

Kassidy Small is a soon-to-be mother of two, and her children are her priority.

“I'm expecting, and doctors recommend that you don`t eat deli meat unless its thoroughly heated. Usually when I eat at Subway I ask them to microwave my meat and then toast it," Small said.

Small, who is 30 weeks pregnant, went into the Subway restaurant in Adel, Iowa on Saturday afternoon, April 9th. There, she says a male employee belittled her request and refused to help her.

“He just said he was really busy and that this is fast food, not fine dining," Small said.

The woman said the employee would only toast the sandwich. He wouldn't warm the meat in the microwave, as she previously requested. She said the man even tried to prove the meat was hot enough by pulling out a thermometer. It read 140 degrees.

According to the CDC, pregnant women must heat deli meat to 165 degrees to prevent the risk of bacteria, which could be harmful to the baby.

Small and another woman who witnessed the conversation eventually left without their food.

“I was in tears and that’s embarrassing in public. It’s easy for a pregnant woman to cry but I was also upset because of what just happened," Small said.

The mother to be took to social media. Dozens came to her defense.

Small said she hopes her experience will raise awareness about customers' medical needs and the importance of customer service.

“Maybe someone will read it and now when someone makes a request they will do it more happily instead of putting down the person for whatever they are requesting," Small said.

One of the other customers who left the restaurant with Small took her to the neighboring Casey's gas station and ordered her a sandwich there.  After hearing her story, Casey's picked up the tab.

18 comments

  • A yooper

    Exactly!! Stay home & cook it your way. Instead of supporting a company that had a pedophile as it’s spokesman try a small chain or even better yet an independent single store shop.

  • chris

    Can’t always get things your way preggers. Don’t eat deli meat if you’re not suppose to unless it’s heated and don’t expect staff to double cater to you. If your doctor says no deli meat common sense says don’t eat at subway, cousins, Jimmy Johns etc

  • There Are Bigger Problems in the World

    This is such a non issue!
    As everyone else stated, eat at home! Maybe not got to a restaurant that hired some chomo if you worry about your kids so much. The gall!

    Those people are not paid enough and I’m sure quite busy.

    If she makes her own lunch, she can save more money and be healthier. I would never eat at any fast food places if I was pregnant.

  • YOUWISH

    I get the eat at home thing BUT, the other side is, employee can’t be arsed to push the button on a microwave yet wants $15.00 and hour? B.S. on that too.

    • Prattgal85

      My fiance works at Subway, has been there for about 12 years now and loves his job. HE only makes $9.00 a hour. He deserves to be at $15 a hour now but Subway won’t allow it. Here is some facts about Subway you don’t realize that shows they DESERVE $15 a hour: No insurance plans, no paid vacations (only managers get that), no paid sick days, no paid leave of any kind, & no paid benefits of any kind whatsoever. including no 401k plan nor retirement plan, Yes Mcdonald’s has this for almost all of their restaurants with what I had learned (applied for them once and was told this by a manager there. )So next time you say someone who works that industry does not deserve the $15 a hour, do your research, get to know what REALLY goes on behind the scenes of the employees.

      • Nathan

        He does not deserve $15 an hour he has been working at an entry-level job for nine years and if he still at the entry-level position that is his fault. That job is not intended to support a family unless you are in a management position is an entry-level position for kids as well as adults who just want to enter the workforce

      • Prattgal85

        He is a shift manager (though not full manager) and does not receive benefits still. And he would get a better job if they were more open jobs in our township (we live in Michigan in a small town.) Not everyone get amazing opportunities like you do.

  • Staticphear

    so if the subway guy heat the meat in the microwave and then threw it in the oven the meat would be super hot or meat would be burnt and she would complain about that.

    • Tonya Long

      First of all she wasn’t complaining and secondly for you to say “she would complain about that” well all that is, is YOU putting YOUR WORDS in someone else’s mouth over a made up event that hypothetically never even happened. Her request was completely reasonable. It’s not like she was asking him for something or to do something that was WAY above his pay grade. I mean dang it’s sad that something like this is even newsworthy but even sadder to see that the reason it is probably even here, is because people like you with your degrading and non supportive comments.

      • Olivia

        It is sad it’s newsworthy but she made it news by complaining – YES, COMPLAINING. If you can be so upset and humiliated over a sandwich, then broadcast it over social media, trash a person’s business, and attempt to elicit support or sympathy, then she opens herself up to the opinions of the public. Most, if you read these and the yahoo posts, feel she is a complaining whiner who needed attention. Her actual reason for her diet is a good thing but you can’t expect the public to go overboard for one pregnant woman when there are millions of pregnant or have been pregnant women. It should have been no big deal and now it is.

  • Cristina

    The awareness that should be raised, as per her wishes, should start with herself. When you are pregnant you DO NOT eat at chain restaurants, period. If you require special diet of any kind, limit your food intake to home-cooked meals.

  • Malai

    This was a waste of an article! Nobody have to accommodate you just because you’re pregnant. She shouldn’t be eating that trash anyway

  • NoRightToNotBeOffended

    This needs to be made public?
    Why didn’t you talk to the manager.
    We don’t care about your daily life.

  • Olivia

    I am writing to the manager at the Subway in Adel, Iowa in support of their store. I am fed up with whining people trashing a business on social media. Now Yahoo picked this story up. It’s ridiculous. Millions of woman have been pregnant and given birth to healthy children. Good for this mom wanting to have a good diet and care for her child, but she should have fixed her own sandwich or went to a place that caters to special diets. During rush in a fast food store there is little time for employees to hold up lines of other customers because someone needs extra attention. You know what Subway serves and how they serve it. Stop whining.

    • Terrell

      You’re right! To heck with this free market economy designed to supply consumer’s demand! And all of that advertising and the way the store is set up to make you THINK you can customize your order…People should know better! And pregnant women should know better than venture from the home! How dare this woman go to a sandwich shop during the nine months she is carrying her baby! Get with it! Most women do everything on their own without any outside resources such as silly restaurants designed to make food quickly. 30 seconds in the microwave?! That’s 30 seconds of this person’s job wasted! They could be checking facebook for god’s sake! We need to think like Olivia and stop asking anything of an industry designed to satisfy paying customers! “Have it your way?” More like, “Have it the hippie way,” am I right???

  • Wendy Benson

    If he got 15.00 an hour, he still would have been a smart alec with no skills other than to make a sandwich and no one gets 15.00 an hour for making a stupid sandwich, even losers like that guy. And the woman who said he should get 15.00 an hour because he does not get insurance, blah, blah, blah, well those jobs are not meant to support a family on and do not deserve insurance or 15.00 an hour. Just another example of someone that doesn’t think that furthering your education is important enough.

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