‘It’s discrimination’ - Man told to leave Devon pub for not controlling his Tourette’s

Steve Ley, 35, has Tourette's syndrome and was asked to 'get out' of a pub because he could not control involuntary movements and sounds
Steve Ley, 35, has Tourette's syndrome and was asked to 'get out' of a pub because he could not control involuntary movements and sounds Credit: BPM Media/PA

A man from Devon with Tourette’s syndrome has claimed that he was told to leave a pub because he failed to control his behaviour.

Steve Ley, from Croyde, was allegedly asked to 'control' his involuntary sounds and movements because there were children around.

The 35-year-old was then told he would not be served if he could not monitor his behaviour and was told he might have to "get out."

He said: "It was a beautiful day and I was really happy to be out. I have drunk in there before but the landlady came over and was really rude and patronising to me.

"I explained I can't control it and that it just comes out. I also pointed out what she was saying was discrimination because I have a medical condition which I can't help.

"She then would not serve me so my friend got me another drink. I was able to stay. "I know what people hear can be quite offensive, but it does not mean I should have to leave somewhere. I don't have a switch or a volume button. It's discrimination."

Steve has posted a video on Facebook detailing his condition and explained that he cannot control his tics.

He also feels that he has to apologise for himself but calls for people to educate themselves about Tourette’s.

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He said: "I don't want to name the pub; I just want to educate people. Killing it with kindness gets you a bit further in life. Children understand it better than adults sometimes.

"It didn't get me down down, but I thought I would do a video about it and post it on my Facebook page. It has already had 2,000 views.

"It's just a bit demoralising and it shouldn't happen. I seem to have more problems locally than I do anywhere else.

"I know everyone is struggling at the moment and things are difficult but if you don't know what Tourette's is in this day and age then it's strange."

Steve is known in Devon for his music and has appeared on television in a documentary called 'MisFits Like Us'.

He started showing symptoms of Tourette's syndrome when he was six years old and says he has struggled with it both growing up and in adulthood.

Steve said: "It got a lot worse when I was at school. The teachers and pupils didn’t really understand what it was so that made it really hard to deal with.

"When I was 11 doctors finally diagnosed me with Tourette's syndrome, but by then I was getting bullied. Being at school was a really tough time for me.

"Having Tourette's can make you feel really isolated and alone.

"It can make you feel anxious and depressed sometimes, and it’s something that you just can’t escape from. I constantly feel like I have to apologise for it."

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