VICTORIA -- B.C. Premier John Horgan says recent reports about restaurant patrons who are refusing to adhere to COVID-19 protocols – and abusing the staff who are trying to enforce those health orders – are unacceptable.

The issue arose at a press conference Thursday, when CTV News asked Horgan about a complaint from a restaurant in his Langford-Juan de Fuca riding.

Staff at the Mr. Mikes restaurant in Langford say a large group of customers verbally attacked two young staff members "to the point of tears" on Wednesday night after staff tried to separate the group into tables of six, as per public health orders.

The premier on Thursday called those customers "idiots."

"Certainly that's not how I raised my kids and I think most people across British Columbia are horrified when they hear stories like the story coming out of Mr. Mikes," Horgan said.

"You’ve got employees that are doing their level best to provide an opportunity for people to come together to share a meal in a safe, comfortable place and to have idiots come in and be idiots is, quite frankly, not acceptable."

Horgan called on British Columbians to "up our game" and "be kinder to each other" during the stress of the pandemic.

"We have to behave with other people as we would want them to behave with us and it’s not acceptable to abuse people when you're going out to have a meal – when you're doing anything, quite frankly," Horgan said.

"There's a whole host of stories that are emerging about bad behaviours during this pandemic," the premier added. "And unfortunately they overshadow the extraordinary stories of kindness that are emerging in every part of British Columbia."

The Langford restaurant is asking customers who cannot adhere to public health orders and be compassionate towards staff to stay home.