In the video, the woman in question is picking up an order of food at the New York City Bagel & Coffee House in Astoria on June 6. She is not wearing a mask, while every other customer and employee seems to be. She then overhears a fellow patron complaining about her to an employee.
“You’re a p*ssy, such a p*ssy,” the woman says to the complaining patron as she waits for her food. “Say it to my face.”
Once her order is ready, she grabs it and walks over to the woman who complained, coughing on her.
“What the f*ck is wrong with you?” the woman she coughs on asks. “You a**hole.”
The woman eventually notices she was being recorded the whole time and seems to have an internal freakout. “That split second where it registers that her life is about to become a nightmare due to internet justice,” one person wrote on Reddit, where the video was also posted.
The woman she is seen coughing on, Ally Goodbaum, told the Daily Dot the woman was “coughing all over the drinks section” and wasn’t covering her mouth, which is why she urged the employee to enforce its mask policy.
New York City Bagel & Coffee House sent the Daily Dot a photo of a sign outlining its mask policy.
“FACE MASKS REQUIRED! ALL EMPLOYEES AND CUSTOMERS MUST WEAR A FACE MASK OR A PROTECTIVE FACE COVERING!” the sign reads.
Goodbaum told the Daily Dot she also blames New York City Bagel & Coffee House. “They were failing to follow the guidelines in many ways,” she said, adding that it didn’t keep tabs on how many people were entering the small store. She said the store did not have a sign outlining its mask policy at the time.
Goodbaum said she tried to call the shop “many times throughout the week, and they didn’t answer.”
“They should really be held accountable. This is her, but it’s also 50% them, too,” Goodbaum said.
The woman, who has been identified by online sleuths as Lauren Balsamo, allegedly works for the Weill Cornell Graduate School of Medical Sciences. Now people are seeking online justice by notifying Weill Cornell Medicine to get her fired.
Update 12:52pm CT, June 13: When reached for comment, Weill Cornell Medicine told the Daily Dot that Balsamo has not been an employee there since January 2020.
“Weill Cornell Medicine condemns the actions recently exhibited by a former employee in a video circulating on social media,” Weill Cornell Medicine said in a statement. “Given our commitment to protecting the health and wellbeing of all New Yorkers and fighting on the frontlines of treating COVID patients, we are steadfast in our public health commitment to further prevention and spread through social distancing, wearing masks, frequent hand-washing and other health precautions.”
Goodbaum said she was “surprised” upon learning Balsamo works in the healthcare industry. “It kind of rubs salt into the wound,” she said. “Weill Cornell should have people that A.) know what the guidelines are, and B.) enforce it—lead by example.”
Goodbaum said she believes Balsamo should be fired, adding that she doesn’t think “she deserves to work in the healthcare industry.”
“She’s putting other people’s lives at risk,” Goodbaum said. “It’s (Weill Cornell’s) corporate social responsibility of trying to ensure that every single one of their employees knows how important these guidelines are, and how important it is to social distance. The fact that she thinks she’s above it, and she’s putting other people at risk—that doesn’t make any sense.”
New York just began its first stage of reopening, and its state mandate requiring New Yorkers to wear a mask is still in effect. “All New Yorkers must wear a face covering when outside of their home if they cannot maintain at least 6 feet from others,” the state government’s face covering FAQ reads.
Goodbaum revealed that she plans to file a police report.