A woman named Sue Francis has reportedly been banned from using the Mecca Bingo services for life, due to making friends with a homeless man names Darren Genery.
The incident occurred after Mrs Francis was on her routine weekly visit to the bingo hall, to engage with friends and have a nice evening when she spotted a man from the corner of her eye who appeared to be shivering with swollen feet. Without a second thought, she thought it was best to go and buy him a cup of tea to give him a little warmth on the cold winters day.
Surprisingly to her own reaction, as she was about to purchase the cup of tea, the young assistant working within the bingo hall commented on why she was doing the act of kindness to the strange homeless man outside and said to her other colleagues on the premises, ‘she’s not taking that outside’. Mrs Francis could not hold her anger and replied in defence of the poor man who was wet in the rain and had nothing to shade him or warm him from the cold. She said, ‘shame on you, you have a roof over your head and warmth-he doesn’t and he is very ill.’ This reply as Mrs Francis states was not at all aggressive nor intimidating. She felt like she had to say something to people who had no interest in the world evolving around them and that it isn’t wrong at all to aid and help those that you can, even with the smallest of gestures like a cup of tea.
Following these events, Mrs Francis, unfortunately, found a letter addressed to her, overviewing the events and communication exchange within that very moment of the incident. Mecca Bingo had made the hasty and abrupt decision to ban her, a customer who has been loyal for many years- all for the sake of buying a hot drink to a homeless man. The homeless man named Darren is described by Sue as a peaceful man who is always accompanied by his dog.
There was an appeal made by Sue herself, who had spoken directly to the managers of the bingo, defending her integrity and handling of the situation. She expressed how wrong it was to ban someone for merely being kind and not self-absorbed. Yet soon after that, it was not long until the ban was reinforced-for life this time. The reason for this? Because Mrs Francis wished to take Darren as her company for the evening within the bingo.
They refused to let him enter within the building and then ultimately cast Mrs Francis out to again. She expressed how deeply disappointed she was against the elite gambling company. She thought a company with so much recognition and respect, would in fact act for the sake of the community and want to be seen in a good light.
Mecca Bingo has unfortunately not wished to comment on the matter, saying that they ‘don’t discuss any information about their customer’s memberships, amongst third parties’.
There have been some good improvements, however, young Darren has been reached out too, with locals and police officers ensuring they provide food, water, clothes and other essential amenities that non-homeless people take for granted. Mrs Francis defends his honour saying, ‘he has never been the kind of person who is in the face of surrounding customers and clients of Mecca Bingo. He is the kind of person who every so often asks for change and sits quietly with his dog as his companion-wanting no trouble at all. Therefore, there is certainly no need for any ill-treatment from the bingo entity. I am ashamed to be living in such an era where homeless people exist and get discriminated against-even for being peaceful and respectful to those around them.’
It apparently has acted as a lifetime experience for Sue, she has said this has inspired her greatly to do more for the communities homelessness problems. By joining voluntary shelter charities, she hopes to be the foothold between giving more to the homeless community and making them feel appreciated.
It is very true, only one act of kindness and you can potentially impact a person’s life in a very significant way!