08/23/2013 02:53 EDT | Updated 10/21/2013 01:20 EDT

Hai Xia Sun McDonald's Incident A 'Misunderstanding,' Says Company

McDonald's Canada has responded to allegations made by Hia Xia Sun that a Richmond franchise store manager discriminated against her due to her accent, saying that the incident was managed appropriately.

Confusion over a drink order in the outlet on Aug. 15 turned unpleasant, Hai said, when the staff member allegedly refused to serve her saying, "You don't understand English."

Contacted for a statement Friday, McDonald's Canada responded to The Huffington Post B.C. by email, saying that a full internal review of the incident had been completed and that they felt nothing inappropriate took place. What happened was "a very simple misunderstanding" and the allegations do not reflect "the long-standing history of inclusivity demonstrated by our franchisee," they said.

Hai's son, Frank Zhao told The Province that McDonald's should apologize, insisting that the issue goes wider than his family, or the Chinese-Canadian community.

"This is about our Canadian image," he said.

Read the full statement from McDonald's Canada:

McDonald's Canada and our local franchisee in Richmond, BC take allegations like this very seriously. We have now completed a full internal review of the situation and are very confident this issue stems from a very simple misunderstanding that was appropriately managed by our local restaurant staff. We regret that this customer was offended, but we want to be very clear these allegations do not reflect our restaurant practices or the long-standing history of inclusivity demonstrated by our franchisee, his management team and staff in the restaurant.

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