Businesses say they'll refuse service to Unite the Right attendees in DC
WASHINGTON - Businesses in the District where white nationalist, white supremacist and neo-Nazis are planning to hold the Unite the Right rally on Sunday have stated they will refuse service to anyone with hate in their heart.
As authorities prepare for the demonstration that comes on the one-year anniversary of the deadly Charlottesville protest, businesses and restaurants near Lafayette Square are also getting ready.
Unite the Right in DC: What you need to know
Heading into the weekend, several businesses could be seen with signs out front with messages such as "No Hate Zone."
One of those businesses, Chief Brian' Comfort Kitchen, is located just blocks from where the epicenter for the rally will be held and its owner said he will take a stand against those attending the Unite the Right rally.
"I will not serve anyone who has any kind of hate in their heart or obvious hate on this weekend or ever," Chef Brian Hill said. "I have to stand up for myself, I have to stand up for my young guns (employees) and any other black person who can't."
Some nearby businesses, such as the Lincoln restaurant, said they will close early on Sunday to avoid any conflict or confrontations.
District law states you can't deny service to anyone based on political affiliation, but when it comes to behavior that threatens a protected class, D.C. law does allow businesses to deny services.
The Restaurant Association of Metropolitan Washington released the following statement to FOX 5:
"Some of our members are concerned about safety for their staff and guests and came to us with questions as we are a resource for the restaurant community. Safety and security are always a top concern as restaurants are public spaces. We have done several trainings with our members and MPD on public safety and security."
Other businesses have taken similar approaches and have said they will deny services to attendees of the Unite the Right rally. Among those, Airbnb said it would ban users who rent out their properties to participate in the Unite the Right rally, citing their terms of service, stating users agree, "To treat everyone in the Airbnb community -- regardless of their race, religion, national origin, ethnicity, disability, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or age -- with respect, and without judgment or bias."
RELATED: DC officials outline Unite the Right rally plans
Airbnb made the same announcement ahead of last year's deadly Unite the Right demonstration in Charlottesville. Jason Kessler, who has helped organize the event for white nationalists, said last year that Airbnb's policy proved that conservative free speech and civil rights were under attack. He then called for those in the alt-right or alternative right to boycott Airbnb.