A Detroit area woman says her autistic son was denied the opportunity to get a haircut after an outburst inside the hair salon.

Gloria Gonzalez says she wasn't given the opportunity to help her five-year-old son Gabriel calm down, but was told disrespectfully to leave the Great Clips salon in Brownstown Township. Brownstown Township is located near Woodhaven southwest of Detroit.

"She didn't let him sit down, she didn't give him a chance to calm down, she just blatantly told me that she was not cutting his hair," Gonzalez tells WDIV in the video below. "This was a blatant 'I will not cut his hair.'"

The mother of three says that sensitivity training is needed not only for hairstylists but for people in all areas of service.

"My son is autistic but he's human," she says. "People need to realize that he's human and there's autistic people everywhere and we have to have that patience, and that grace, and that training."


Great Clips Responded

The owner of the franchise issued a statement calling the incident an "unfortunate instance of miscommunication," saying that all customers are welcome at the salon.

Others Weigh In

Although there was support for Gonzalez and her family in the comments section, many people weighed in defense of the stylist, saying that stylists have the right to deny service in some cases.

  • Michelle:  I have been attacked without warning or provocation by autistic children so people should have the right to refuse services.
  • Mallory:  You have the right to deny services especially when it’s potentially dangerous around shears
  • Troww:  I’m autistic and I would deny cutting another person's hair if they were having a complete outburst. Autism isn’t an excuse to act more erratic.

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