Member for Keppel, Brittany Lauga.
Member for Keppel, Brittany Lauga. Allan Reinikka ROK230418alauga1

The drive-thru moment that still frightens Brittany Lauga

A FRIGHTENING drive-through incident more than a decade ago still haunts Brittany Lauga to this very day.

The tough Keppel MP still gets the chills when she recalls the time a man tried to jump through a drive-through window to get at her.

She was a young teenager working at the store when the customer became extremely abusive and then physically aggressive.

"I still get shivers now when I think of this guy trying to jump into my drive-thru window while I was trying to serve customers," she said.

"He also alarmed customers in the car.

"Then he verbally abused me as he headed off."

After living through this experience, Mrs Lauga said she strongly supported the current drive to prevent and eliminate abusive and violent behaviour from customers towards workers.

She said customers must respect retail and fast food workers, and reminded them that abuse is never acceptable.

She endorsed the Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees' Association campaign, No One Deserves a Serve, to drive home the important message to respect retail and fast food workers this Christmas.

"There are alarming figures that found 80 per cent of respondents, that's four out of every five, have experienced abuse from a customer in the past 12 months.

"That's particularly horrendous when you realise that most of the fast food workers are teenagers or young adults."

Mrs Lauga said while the festive season may be a pressure cooker at times, there was never any excuse for being abusive and violent towards any staff.

She said the SDA figures found an alarming number of those abused were 17 and under, with 28 per cent of them suffering physical abuse such as punching, hitting or pushing.

"The impact on the mental or physical health of these employees is adverse," she said.

"I strongly support that you Buy Local to keep the local economy ticking over, but would also ask you hear the message loud and clear: Abuse is not part of the job: no one deserves a serve."