Supermodel Natalia Vodianova is standing up for her sister—and simultaneously shedding a light on the cruel ways people with disabilities can be treated.
The 33-year-old Russian beauty took to Facebook to pen a passionate post after her 27-year-old sister, who is autistic and has cerebral palsy, was allegedly kicked out of a Russian cafe for "scaring all the customers away."
Per BBC news, Vodianova, who has served as the face of Calvin Klein and has appeared on the cover of every major fashion publication, wrote on social media that her sister Oksana, who was on a walk with her caregiver when they stopped at the cafe, was asked to leave the restaurant by the owner who said, "Leave. You're scaring all our customers away. Go and get medical help for you and your child. And then go out in public."
Vodianova reportedly wrote that the caregiver tried to explain that Oksana had special needs, prompting him to call security to kick them out of the establishment.
David M. Benett/Getty Images for the Walkabout Foundation
"Leave, or we'll call a nuthouse, and an ambulance, and will lock you in a cellar," she quoted one of the guards as saying, according to BBC News.
BBC also reports that Natalia and Oksana's mother was called and the three women were all taken to the police station on suspicion of "minor hooliganism."
While the disheartening occurrence has made a number of headlines, Vodianova, who launched The Naked Heart Foundation in 2004 to support kids with special needs in Russia, said it happens all too often.
"What happened to my sister Oksana ... is not an isolated case," she wrote (per BBC News). "This is unfortunately the reality all families raising children with special needs experience. It's difficult for me to talk about this, but I understand that this is an alarm bell for society that must be heard."