A woman has gone viral after sharing footage of herself visibly shaking while calling out a male retail employee who she says "shushed" his female co-worker in front of her.
Queenslander Amy Dickinson was being served by a female employee in an interior design store when a male co-worker came over to assist them with a product return. Immediately, something seemed off to Dickinson with the way the man was speaking to the "possibly new" colleague — but she said the final straw was when he put his finger up to the other worker's mouth and told her to "shush" mid-sentence.
"If he is doing something like that in front of a customer what is he doing behind closed doors," Dickinson said to Yahoo News Australia. "Regardless of gender, we need to stand up for anyone when we see something like this".
Dickinson then waited until the transaction was processed and calmly told the man what he had done was "rude" and not the way to treat someone — sharing the confrontation on TikTok to inspire others to also call out "bad" behaviour they see.
Dickinson had gone into the interior design store to return some products and was being assisted by a female shop assistant who needed help processing the return from a male colleague. From the get-go, the way the co-worker spoke to the woman seemed "condescending" and "dismissive".
During the conversation, Dickinson told the pair she wasn't sure if she had the correct receipt, to which the woman began to reply that "even if it's not the right receipt we should be able to find you in the ..."
Then, to Dickinson's horror, the man says "shhh" and "puts his hand up to her mouth". "That was the final straw and when I was like, you know what, I'm going to say something," she said.
After the transaction was done, Dickinson told the man how inappropriate his behaviour was and in response, the seemingly flustered man attempted to mumble an explanation and apologised to Dickinson. "I apologise for that," he said.
'If you see something, say something'
Dickinson revealed that as a victim of domestic violence, she has experienced "belittling" behaviour identical to this, which, in her situation, became much worse over time. "My ex used to publicly shush me all the time and I remember thinking 'I wish someone would say something'," she said. "So if you don't speak up you are enabling the bad behaviour. I decided recently if I don’t say something I'm allowing it".
Do you have a story about a similar experience? Contact reporter Laura Koefoed at firstname.lastname@example.org
Praised by thousands for her 'courage'
The original video has been viewed over 3.1 million times and has brought with it a barrage of support. "It's so empowering to see such courage and love like you've shown here," one responded.
"Yes Queen!! Powering through those adrenaline tremors whilst keeping your voice steady and calm!" another said.
Others shared their own experiences of being treated poorly in a work environment. "My boss once accused me of stealing (a focaccia I had for lunch from the restaurant I was working at, which I paid for) and was yelling at me in the restaurant in front of customers, and one customer stood up and said you can’t talk to your employees like that and walked out!" commented one.
Do you have a story tip? Email: email@example.com.