Tempe bar cleared of transgender discrimination allegations

Aug 21, 2015, 8:20 PM
Tempe Tavern, the bar where Briana Sandy accused a bartender of discriminating against her. (Facebo...
Tempe Tavern, the bar where Briana Sandy accused a bartender of discriminating against her. (Facebook/Tempe Tavern)
(Facebook/Tempe Tavern)

TEMPE, Ariz. — A bar in Tempe has been cleared of any wrongdoing in a discrimination investigation.

The case stems from a claim made by Briana Sandy, a Phoenix-area transgender woman, who claimed a bartender at Tempe Tavern told her to leave because, “we don’t serve your kind.”

A 10-week investigation by Tempe’s Diversity Office found no evidence to support Sandy’s claim.

Briana Sandy, the transgender woman who claimed a bartender at Tempe Tavern discriminated against her. (Facebook/Briana Sandy)

(Facebook/Briana Sandy)

“I brought all the facts to the table and that is why I have been vindicated of any kind of wrongdoing,” Rob Tasso, manager at Tempe Tavern, said. “Tempe Tavern didn’t discriminate against this person; it was all a complete lie.”

A report filed by investigators said witnesses consistently report the bartender told Sandy, “I am sorry, we cannot serve you,” and her gender identity did not play a role in that request.

“Anybody can say anything about anybody and then you have to stand there and defend yourself and that’s basically what happened to us,” he said. “We had to stand here and defend ourselves for no reason because this person chose to fabricate a whole story.”

Tasso explained the bar is located adjacent to an adult bookstore. He has an established practice of advising bartenders not to serve customers from that store which does not violate Tempe’s discrimination code.

Investigators found Sandy was a patron at that store in the last year.

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Tempe bar cleared of transgender discrimination allegations