With the optimism to have more customers, Pizza Patron has launched a new promotion that involves ordering pizza in Spanish. Little did they know that running such campaigns would put them in a sticky situation.
Along with its 102 branches, this takeout pizza chain restaurant promoted "Ordena en español y llevate gratis una pizza grande de pepperoni" (Order in Spanish and get a large pepperoni pizza free), running at 5-8pm on June 5.
Some people say it’s a resentful campaign, where language becomes a vital controversy. The chairman of the Conservative Caucus Peter Thomas said “It seems to punish people who can't speak Spanish, and I resent that. In public areas, people should be speaking English, and that includes pizza parlors.”
On the other hand, Lisa Navarrete, the National Council of La Raza, opposed with the opinion of Thomas. "For people to get offended or upset at this seems a little bit silly. It doesn't preclude anybody. Anyone can say, 'por favor.” She said.
The controversy led customers to divide. Some are against it, some are for it.
Several franchises have supported the promotion by reaching out to customers in teaching them to say the phrase and according to these owners, there are no discriminations. In fact “pizza” is a universal word, where it’s meaning and translation remains the same.
But being known as an institution that aims to explore more on Hispanic markets and make positive changes for immigrants, the Pizza Patron could really have a hard time staying away from all the drama.