By Hillary Mintz
WAUKESHA, Wisconsin (WISN) — A Waukesha skating rink is being accused of a discriminatory policy.
A Milwaukee mother is outraged and hoping her experience prompts change.
“She called me, and I’m like, ‘Are you serious?'” Laney Anderson said.
Anderson said Saturday her 16-year-old daughter went to Skateland in Waukesha with her friends and their parents but said the owner wouldn’t let her inside.
“The owner pretty much said that no Milwaukee teens are allowed even with their parents,” Anderson said.
“What do you make of this?” WISN 12’s Hillary Mintz asked.
“It’s discrimination. That’s what it is. It’s discrimination in our face,” Anderson said.
She posted about her daughter’s experience on social media.
“As a father, it was difficult to hear that and tried to imagine myself in that position,” Milwaukee County Supervisor Ryan Clancy said.
Clancy took matters into his own hands Sunday.
“It was a test for this business to see if your Milwaukee teenager could get in?” Mintz asked.
“Exactly,” Clancy said.
Video shows them pay and enter with no questions asked.
“We were able to get in without a blink of the eye,” Clancy said.
“Do you think it was because you’re white?” Mintz asked.
“Absolutely,” Clancy said.
Clancy then confronted the owner with a camera rolling.
“So the only criteria that you have is residency right, and you will allow teenagers from here, just not from the city of Milwaukee?” Clancy asked.
“If they’re a Waukesha County resident out here we’d never question it,” the owner said.
“That’s (expletive) racist and (expletive) good luck (expletive) off,” Clancy said.
“This is a horrifically racist policy. He can’t come out and say he doesn’t want Black and brown residents from Milwaukee in his business, and he thinks he can say he can restrict people from a certain place,” Clancy said.
WISN 12 tried reaching the owner by phone, text, at Skateland and at home but did not get a response until Monday evening when the owner told Mintz he was waiting to hear back from their lawyer before making a statement.
Skateland’s Facebook post Saturday made no mention of residency requirements, only saying, “The 6:30 p.m. session is geared towards teens, but all ages are welcome!”
“His reasoning was like Milwaukee teens are trouble, but you don’t know every teenager in Milwaukee,” Anderson said.
“So what happens in Milwaukee? What’s the problem?” Clancy asked Skateland’s owner.
“Shooting and fighting,” the owner said.
Anderson said after the incident, she was considering taking legal action against Skateland and plans to hire an attorney.
Waukesha police told WISN 12 they were unaware of the residency policy at Skateland and said they are rarely called to the business for juvenile criminal activity.
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