Australian Immigrant from South Sudan Faces Racism with Grace

Although many of us Westerners believe we have overcome bigotry, unfortunately, these racist tendencies rear their ugly heads every once in awhile. A recent story from Australia concerning this issue is now going viral. This story has to do with a young woman named Josie Ajak, an Australian immigrant from South Sudan. She was brought to Australia when she was only 8 years of age. Although this story has some ugly details, many people around the world have been inspired by Ajak’s grace, Ajak’s co-workers, and the support from the local community.

Australian Immigrant from South Sudan Faces Racism with Grace

This incident took place in the tourist city of Cairns, which is a part of Queensland, Australia. Ajak was working at her post as a barista at a local Gloria Jean’s coffee shop. While she was making coffee for her customers one day, Ajak came face-to-face with a very nasty woman. An older white lady told Ajak that she did not want to be served by a black person. This customer rudely requested that Ajak gets a white employee to serve her.

Ajak handled this situation with grace and tact. After hearing the customer’s racist request, Ajak told the lady she would search for a white employee. Ajak went to the back of the coffee house and told the rest of the workers what the woman said. They all immediately decided to give this customer the silent treatment.


Ajak and her co-workers went on with their daily business just ignoring the bigoted white woman. They made an extra effort to smile and serve the other customers with respect and dignity. This must have really gotten on the white lady’s nerves since she left a few minutes later without saying another word.


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