Fri. Mar 31st, 2023


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Family outraged after nail salon turns disabled daughter away

3 min read

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The family of a girl with a rare medical condition are outraged after they say she was turned away from a nail salon by staff who said they “don’t do nails for people like her”. Fourteen-year-old Shiloh Maberly-Stenner had gone with her grandmother and care worker to Rainbow Nails in Robina, on Australia’s Gold Coast, for a pampering session.

She was born with the extremely rare disability open-lip bilateral schizencephaly, which left slices in her brain’s cerebral hemisphere.

The defect essentially left the teenager, who uses a wheelchair, missing part of her brain.

And when she arrived at the salon her furious mother Jade says she was told: “No we can’t, we don’t do nails for people like her.”

According to the Mirror the shop said someone with a disability complained in the past, so “now we just have a company policy that we don’t do people with disabilities”.

In Australia it is unlawful for people with disabilities to be discriminated against across most areas of public life, which includes “getting or using services” and “accessing public spaces”, according to the country’s Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (DDA).

Shiloh’s mum said: “It’s just truly infuriating. It’s 2023 and I can’t believe this is still happening.”

And her grandmother Kim Maberly-Stenner said she was “gobsmacked” by the “terrible treatment” and that she and non-verbal Shiloh burst into tears due to the comments of the staff.

She said: “I was shocked, I couldn’t believe that somebody actually said that.

“It was heartbreaking, it was just horrible, it was just terrible. It made me cry, it upset me that much.”

Keya Woodland, Shiloh’s support worker, asked the salon for an explanation three times because she was so stunned about what they had told them.

She said: “I was completely just blown away, I was in shock, couldn’t comprehend what they were actually saying, it did take me a moment to process it.”

“I asked her again why she couldn’t do her nails and she said ‘because she has a disability and we don’t do anybody with a disability’.

“I asked her about three times if she could explain to me why and she said, ‘My manager said no’.”

Ms Woodland told the manicurist that they were discriminating against Shiloh and this was illegal.

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Shiloh’s dad Darren said it was “extremely upsetting” that this level of discrimination had happened in a first world country.

He said: “The fact a company would have a policy discriminating against persons with a disability in a first world country is extremely upsetting.

“Being Latino myself and having experienced discrimination on multiple occasions, it really hurts for my daughter to go through this as well.”

Shiloh’s parents help to run a Vietnamese charity for orphaned children with disabilities and say they hope other disadvantaged children aren’t affected by the same discrimination. has asked Rainbow Nails for a comment.

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