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‘Excessive abuse’ from aggressive customer forces Melbourne cafe to shut its doors

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A Doncaster East cafe was forced to close early yesterday after an aggressive customer threatened staff over rice.

Owner of Bob’s Your Uncle cafe, Lisa Bilston, said abuse has “been a common thing” recently.

After yesterday’s abuse, she decided to close the cafe for the remainder of the day to support the mental health of her workers.

The customer became aggressive after staff explained that the blue butterfly pea rice usually served with a dish was unavailable due to COVID-19 shortages.

“We tried to explain to them … he wouldn’t listen, he got aggressive,” she told Neil Mitchell.

“We thought he was actually going to hit us.

“We’d had an explosion the day before as well.”

Ms Bilston, who has been in the hospitality industry for 39 years, says customer abuse is getting “much worse”.

“It will happen again,” she said.

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