A lesbian couple who were asked to leave a Maryland restaurant have held a small protest outside it.

Aiyi’nah Ford and her partner Torian Brown said they were ejected from the Tastee Diner in Silver Spring, Montgomery County, last Wednesday night.

According to Ford, they were just hugging while a heterosexual couple nearby were kissing.

“We were just like talking and holding each other, and the next thing you know, the manager comes over and he asks us to leave,” Brown told News4.

Ford added: “Their exact words were, ‘This is a family establishment, and people are trying to eat,’ as though interaction between Torian and I was something to the effect of ‘Fear Factor,’ if you’ve ever watched that show.”

Restaurant manager Lisa Wilkes countered: “The Tastee Diner is a family restaurant, and it doesn’t matter if you’re straight or if you’re gay. If you start going beyond the point of kissing and things start to get a little X-rated, we’re going to ask you to stop.”

Wilkes insists the couple went further than just hugging and says she has CCTV evidence of this.

Ford and Brown are encouraging other gay couples to protest with minimal displays of affection. They are also seeking an apology from the restaurant.

Last month, a group of five gay men said they had been kicked out of an El Paso restaurant because they were gay.

Shortly after ordering a meal on June 26th at Chico’s Tacos restaurant, security staff allegedly ordered the group to leave after two of the men kissed.

The men then called the police, but said that officers sided with the restaurant, saying it had the right to refuse service to anyone.