McDonald's Employees Stage Protest in 10 Major Cities Over Sexual Harassment


Previously, the workers engaging the 10-city strike noted McDonald's failed to respond to their complaints of propositions for sex, groping, and lewd comments.

In another case, 22-year-old New Orleans worker Tanya Harrell said she was taunted for complaining to managers about a co-worker who had groped and verbally harassed her. Harrell said a second co-worker later forced her into the men's room, exposed himself and attempted to sexually assault her, but she decided not to report the incident based on her supervisors' failure to act on the first complaint.

The new allegations come nearly two years after 15 McDonald's workers in Fight for $15 filed a series of sexual harassment complaints against the company.

In a statement McDonald's said: "There is no place for harassment or discrimination of any kind at McDonald's".

Plans for the walkout - to start at lunchtime on September 18 - have been approved in recent days by "women's committees" formed by employees at dozens of McDonald's restaurants across the U.S. Lead organizers include several women who filed complaints with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission in May alleging pervasive harassment at some of McDonald's franchise restaurants. "When they have tainted lettuce in 17 states, they don't say, 'Oh, this is only a problem for the franchisee.' They go to work trying to solve the problem across the system". "They could do a way better job". "To ensure we are doing all that can be done, we have engaged experts in the areas of prevention and response including, RAINN, to evolve our policies so everyone who works at McDonald's does so in a secure environment every day". Another charge was filed Tuesday after the walkout by an employee in St. Louis, and 17 more were filed in 2016. The teen reported it to her manager, who allegedly told her, "You will never win that battle".

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She pointed to victories by hotel workers in Chicago, where an ordinance now requires hotels to provide panic buttons to all workers who clean, restock, or take inventory alone in guest rooms and rest rooms. "We all took a vote and the decision to go on strike was unanimous".

Employees at McDonald's in numerous cities will be participating in the strike.

McDonald's workers had planned midday protests Tuesday in Chicago, Durham, N.C., Kansas City, Los Angeles, Miami, Milwaukee, New Orleans, Orlando, San Francisco and St. Louis.

Strikers will also use the walkout to demand higher wages.

Employees shouldn't have to "choose between a paycheck and enduring abuse", said Fatima Goss Graves, president and CEO of the National Women's Law Center, which administers the TIME'S UP Legal Defense Fund.