Two gay men have received a cash settlement from McDonald's after the pair and three friends were verbally abused with anti-gay slurs at a downtown Louisville, Kentucky restaurant.

Ryan Marlatt and Teddy Eggers took action against the burger chain after their calls for a remedy were ignored.

In their complaint to the Louisville Human Relations Commission, the pair allege that a McDonald's employee working behind the counter called them “faggots,” “cocksuckers” and “bitch” during a lunchtime altercation on July 26.

The two men say they requested to speak to a manager after they overheard one employee calling them “faggots” to another. While waiting to make their complaint, the employee approached the two men and their three friends. An argument ensued, where the employee repeatedly called them “faggots” and one of them “cocksucker” and “bitch” in front of other customers.

The on-duty manager said she did not see any problem and refused to refund $28 – claiming only the unavailable general manager was at liberty to do so.

Marlatt says staff at the Louisville restaurant repeatedly ignored his telephone calls to reach the general manager; they simply hung up on him. A corporate complaint was also ignored.

Ten months after the men were berated, McDonald's has agreed to a cash settlement and diversity training for management at 30 of its Louisville-area restaurants, the ACLU announced.

“We were hurt and upset, but at least we're adults and can handle being called names,” Eggers said in a statement. “We hated thinking that this kind of harassment might also happen to someone young and vulnerable who would really take it to heart.”

Both men received $2,000 from McDonald's.

“We're really grateful to the Louisville Metro Human Relations Commission for its investigation, as well as to our friends at the Fairness Campaign, and Common Ground at the University of Louisville, for keeping the pressure on McDonald's to do the right thing,” said Michael Aldridge, executive director of the ACLU of Kentucky. “While we're fortunate to have a law banning sexual orientation discrimination in Louisville, this goes to show that it's still important to speak out and do something about it when your rights are violated.”