Sean May, 26, was fired from his job at the Casa Monica hotel in downtown St. Augustine after he refused to take off an American flag lapel pin.
A Florida hotel is coming under fire for firing a front desk worker who refused to remove his American flag lapel pin.
Sean May, 26, was canned from his front desk supervisor job at the Casa Monica hotel in St. Augustine on Friday after he refused to take off the little pin, which said he's worn to work every day for two years, local station News4Jax reported.
"I've actually gotten probably more compliments about it than any of the service I've actually done at the hotel, which is an interesting concept," May told the station.
The Casa Monica hotel said the firing was a matter of company policy – not patriotism.
"The property reflects its pride in America and great patriotism by flying the Stars and Stripes high over the hotel," the hotel said in a statement ton News4Jax.
"However, our employee handbook clearly states, 'No other buttons, badges, pins or insignias of any kind are permitted to be worn.' No matter an individual's national preference, political views or religious affiliation, it is a standard regulation which ensures equality for all (employees)," the statement said.
May said the hotel had recently come under new corporate leadership, and he suspected members of the new brass at its parent company, Kessler Enterprise, were responsible for the dress code crackdown.
"It seems silly. It seems so, so silly in the long run," May said. "They're so upset about a little pin," he said.
May was sent home on Thursday after refusing to remove the pin from his suit jacket. He was fired the next day.
Angry locals were calling for a boycott of the hotel.
"Anybody who takes a chance on his livelihood to take a stand for patriotism is a hero and should be treated like a hero," local Air Force veteran Bruce Whalen told the station.