Source: Independent Press Association
On June 17, 2005 the Independent Press Association reported, "When Rabbi Israel Steinberg went to New York City’s Nations Café in November 1992, all he wanted was some coffee. Instead he got a 12 ½-year legal battle. Last week the battle ended when the New York State Division of Human Rights ordered the Nations Café to pay Steinberg $500 compensation for the mental anguish he suffered when one of the store’s employees refused to serve him and ridiculed him because of his religion. The café is also required to stop discrimination on the basis of religious beliefs. Steinberg, an Orthodox rabbi who supplies kosher certification to several restaurants in New York, was on his way to a conference when he stopped for coffee at the Nations Café, which serves the United Nations area. Wearing a yarmulke, he sat at the counter and requested that his coffee be served in a disposable cup, as he did not want to drink from a mug washed with other dishes that were used to serve non-kosher foods. The Nations Café employee serving Steinberg refused to give him coffee in a paper cup to drink at the counter, saying that the paper cups were only for 'to go' orders; if Steinberg wanted his coffee in a disposable cup, he would have to go outside. Then, according to Steinberg, the café employee mocked the rabbi’s religious beliefs and kicked him out of the restaurant."