Taco Bell responds after worker claimed he was fired over Black Lives Matter face mask

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Taco Bell has responded after an Ohio restaurant manager claimed he was fired for wearing a Black Lives Matter face mask to work.

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The fast food chain voiced their support for the movement, revealing that the company has since apologized to the employee involved and that the issue is being addressed with the local franchisee.

Denzel Skinner recently alleged in a Facebook Live video that he had been fired from the Taco Bell for refusing to remove the BLM face mask while at work, WFMJ reports. The Youngstown man had been employed at that branch of the chain for eight years.

A segment of Skinner's original video, which was shared to Facebook on June 8, hit Twitter on Thursday morning, where it has since gone viral with over 1 million views.


In the quick clip, Skinner said he was "standing up for what's right" as he refused to remove the face covering in a heated conversation with another manager, who was out of the frame.

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"You can't bring politics into the building," the unseen manager said, insisting that employees had to wear "plain" face masks.

"I'm not bringing politics in, this is what I'm standing for," Skinner replied.

The argument continued, as the other manager claimed that the Black Lives Matter mask was not allowed as a "company thing."

According to WFMJ, Skinner said that a manager told him to remove the Black Lives Matter mask, a request which he refused. Skinner walked out of the restaurant, as his coworker threatened that if he left the building, he would lose his job.

"I'm getting fired from my job because I have a Black Lives Matter mask," Skinner wrote on Facebook.

Taco Bell has responded after an Ohio restaurant manager claimed he was fired for wearing a Black Lives Matter face mask to work. (iStock)


When reached for comment on Thursday morning, a spokesperson for Taco Bell Corp., a subsidiary of Yum! Brands, told FOX Business that it has since apologized to Skinner for the incident and voiced the company's solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement.

"We believe Black Lives Matter. We were disappointed to learn about the incident that took place in Youngstown, OH. We take this very seriously; we have been working closely with our franchisee that operates this location to address the issue," the spokesperson said.

"Our Chief People Officer and Yum!'s Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer spoke with Denzel last week to apologize and discuss the situation," they continued. "Our goal is to ensure our policies are inclusive and keep our team members and customers safe."


"While our policies at restaurants do not prohibit Team Members from wearing Black Lives Matter masks, we are working to clarify our mask policy so this doesn't happen again," they added.

In related headlines, last week Starbucks adjusted its employee dress code to allow staffers to wear Black Lives Matter shirts and pins, following heated complaints that the attire was prohibited.

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