SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash.--The conversation about nearly nude baristas began again on Tuesday in the Spokane Valley. City Council members voted in favor of the unlawful public exposure ordinance and it will go to a second reading for further approval on November 26.
City leaders discussed the ordinance that would require baristas and everyone else to cover up on Tuesday nights.
Protestors of the Triple X Espresso, now called Devil’s Brew, are upset with its topless Tuesdays and Thursdays theme. They said the stand near Pines and Sprague should be classified as adult entertainment and should be moved to designated zones.
City leaders have hundreds of letters and emails from people concerned about the coffee stand.
The leaders decided to look at an ordinance that spelled out what is acceptable for everyone to wear in public. It is called the unlawful public exposure ordinance.
The ordinance would state what people can and can not wear in public places. It would also require private body parts to be covered. It also states that more than half of the female breast must be covered. That does not include breast feeding.
Body paint or any material you can see through does not count as covering.
Protestors hoped the ordinance will force the baristas to cover up while employees said the City’s efforts should be somewhere else.
“Why aren't we putting our efforts into after school activities and pushing gang members out and bettering our town but instead we are worried about people making coffee in their underwear,” said an anonymous barista.
The ordinance would hold everyone accountable and order business owners to make sure their employees comply. Any violation would be considered a misdemeanor which could mean up to a $1,000 fine.
The owner of the stand said she did not plan on coming to the meeting Tuesday night. She said she does not classify herself as adult entertainment. She plans on opening another stand soon.
The ordinance will have a second vote on November 26.