Page restaurant owner: English only
12 News
Nov. 16, 2007

Brandon Kline

Some consider it to be a dying language. Thatís why many in the Native American community are working to make sure the Navajo language doesnít go away. But a Page restaurant says if employees want to speak it, they can work somewhere else.

Richard Kidman has owned RD's drive-in for more than 30 years. He says he's not prejudiced. But, he expects his workers to speak English only.

The majority of Kidman's workforce is Native American. But he says he started having problems when some employees complained about co-workers speaking in Navajo. He didn't know what was being said, so he decided to implement an English only policy.

Employees we spoke with say customers are more comfortable when just English is spoken. But not everyone is a fan. Several Page residents told us they thought the policy was un-necessary.

Kidman tried a similar policy in 2002, but the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed a lawsuit against him, which was later settled.

Kidman says there are exceptions to the new policy. Navajo can be spoken on breaks and with non-English speaking customers.