6 year-old girl denied access to restroom because “nothing is free”

On Sunday July 8th, my sister Iva Hodges stopped at a restaurant/gas station called Arizona Last Stop in White Hills, AZ. She had been on the road for hours with her mother and two young children, on their way home from a family vacation to to Sierra Vista, AZ. Iva’s daughter Tori, who is only 6 years-old, needed to use the restroom so they pulled over at the first convenience store they saw from the highway — Arizona Last Stop.

Upon entering the store, Iva noticed a sign indicating the restroom facilities were for paying customers only. She also noticed the bathroom area itself was chained off and guarded. Iva approached the cashier counter with Tori, who was holding her crotch and telling her mom she was about to pee in her pants. Iva asked the employee behind the counter if her daughter could use the restroom before making a purchase and the cashier refused, insisting she had to make a purchase before going into the bathroom. Iva pointed to her daughter, explaining the 6 year-old was about to have an accident and she would gladly buy some things after Tori relieved herself. But again, the cashier refused.

Iva then placed some candy on the counter to buy, but the employee ushered her to another cashier, telling Iva she couldn’t help her. Iva attempted to pay with a debit card but was told by the other cashier the minimum for paying with a debit card was $5. Iva’s mother had to pay for the candy by scouring her purse for loose change because Iva did not have enough cash. By this point, Tori was in tears and even though Iva’s mother was taking care of the purchase, Tori was not allowed into the restroom until all the money was in the cashier’s hand.

Iva was upset about the incident (as any mother would be) and wrote an email to Arizona Last Stop from their website requesting they change their restroom policy. However, the owner of Arizona Last Stop appeared to be undaunted by the complaint and explained the strict policy is in place because “I am there to do a business and nothing is free”.

It is one thing to enforce rules and regulations on adults (unprofessional as they may be) but to be so blatantly inconsiderate to a child is downright mean.

What happened to Iva and Tori isn’t an isolated incident. If you take a look at yelp.com, many of the reviews for Arizona Last Stop divulge the abhorring restroom policy and how rude the staff is. It makes anyone wonder how someone could run a business in such an exorbitant way and get away with it.

My niece, Tori.

Below is the detailed correspondence between Iva and the owner of Arizona Last Stop.

[July 8
Iva Hodges
U need to change ur bathroom policy to not include little girls that are crying becauae they are about to wet thier pants. I told u i was going to make a purchase but that wasnt good enough. U would rather have a child have an accident. U should be ashamed of ur self

July 9
Arizona Last Stop
There are plenty of snacks and 50 cent post cards to purchase. Unfortunately the rules are in place because so many others have trashed my bathrooms and not buy a thing when they were done which I thank you for the message it just sucks we can't allow our selves to be a truck stop toilet place.. We have way to many great customers that deserve to use our clean restrooms. Thanks again for understanding

July 9
Iva Hodges
i told the woman behind the counter that we were going to make a purchase and we were. We probably would have bought close to 50 or 60 dollars worth of stuff. But I ended up buying a 2 dollar arrowhead because you guys would not let my daughter use the bathroom before she wet her pants. She was standing there crying because she knew she woukld not make it. The lady behind the counter would not let her go to the bathroom until the money was in her hands and that is rediculous to do to a 6 yr old. you should make exceptions in that case.

July 9
Arizona Last Stop
Children grow up to be adults and learn from their parents that rules and policies are in place for a reason. The longer you argue the longer your daughter doesn't go so you showed her what lesson here that because she is 6 she is entitled to use the bathroom. Then because she is 10 then because she is 16 then bevause she is cute then because she is a women then because she is just her. I do appreciate the feedback but unfortunately I am there to do a business and nothing is free to me so once it is I promise I will open the doors to everyone entitled to use the bathroom because they have been misled their whole life that rules and pollicies are meant to be broken. Have a great day and thanks again for understanding

July 9
Iva Hodges
I did not argue I immediately made a purchase. You obviously do not have children. This message you wrote to me will be everywhere. I was not arguing the fact that we should make a purchase to use the bathroom. That was fine and understandable. I do not believe that children should be allowed to pee thier pants when the parent promises to make a purchase after their child uses the bathroom. We do not expect to use your bathroom for free. There were actually plenty of places to stop around you. You were not the only business out there. We stopped to shop.....and you missed out. Because I will make sure everyone knows about this.

July 10
Arizona Last Stop
Iva again feel free to post this however you wish too.. I have 4 year olds hand me a dollar for a sucker then ask to use the restroom yet I have adults acting like [expletive].. you do the math]

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3 Responses to 6 year-old girl denied access to restroom because “nothing is free”

  1. In Virginia it is a law that any public place must allow access to their restrooms. No conditions are allowed on the access. Talk to your state and get some laws passed. I know it’s a slow and annoying process, but it does work…. Oh yeah, and put that jerk out of business everyone! It would be great if he never got another paying customer!

  2. Talyseon says:

    Once upon a time, something similar happened to me and a female friends; when they refused her, I asked them to pick what aisle they wanted her to pee in, because we wouldn’t be leaving until she had. We were grudgingly allowed access to the restroom.

  3. Kevin says:

    Some people are in business strictly to make a buck. Their hearts and pockets simply do not meet.

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