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Los Angeles restaurant Perch sparks outrage over ‘security charge’ to customers

Perch LA, a rooftop restaurant with a French flair, has sparked outrage by adding a 4.5 per cent “security charge” to customers’ bills.

The fee first appeared on customer bills late last month and has since become the subject of numerous articles and Reddit posts.

Perch is located in the Pershing Square Building, in the Historic Core neighborhood of LA. The restaurant had explained that the surcharge was necessary to pay for personnel to secure its location which spans several levels including the roof, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

One restaurant patron pointed out that “having security isn’t atypical” for the area.

All of the buildings down here [in Perch’s neighborhood of the Historic Core] have security. So why 4.5%? Why not $1.00 per check?” the anonymous Redditor asked.

“Why this amount? How much does this fee generate for them per night? How much do they spend on their security and, most importantly, why do patrons have to pay it? Why advertise it? Is it their commentary about how unsafe their community is?”

Another added: “Why not add rent charge? Or insurance charge? Or payroll charge?”

But one customer, Eve Li, told CBS News, that she didn’t feel safe in the area. “I honestly don’t feel that safe so it might be necessary,” she said.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Perch had removed the explanation for the security fee from their website.

Mrs Fish, a sushi restaurant which shares the building with Perch and is owned by the same parent company, Citrus Hospitality Management, does not have a security fee.

The Independent has contacted Perch LA for a comment.

Since the pandemic, restaurant-goers have become increasingly frustrated with restaurant surcharges for employee health insurance, tap water, credit card transactions, along with costly cancellation fees.

An unnamed Michelin-starred restaurant in Brooklyn, New York reportedly charged one patron a $200 fee when he was forced to cancel due his son being hospitalized, the New York Times reported in 2022.

According to a National Restaurant Association survey, 15 per cent of restaurant owners added surcharges in 2023.

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  • Source of information and images “independent”

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