McDonalds workers to strike next week over sexual harassment policy

The logo of McDonald's is seen at its flagship restaurant in Chicago Ill. on Aug. 8 2018. Chicago is one of the cities in which workers will strike over sexual harassment next week

The logo of McDonald's is seen at its flagship restaurant in Chicago Ill. on Aug. 8 2018. Chicago is one of the cities in which workers will strike over sexual harassment next week

"They want people to think they care, but they don't care", she said.

In hopes of getting management to do more about this issue, McDonald's workers have voted to go on a single-day strike in ten cities next week.

The organizers include McDonald's employees who filed complaints earlier this year with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission about harassment at some McDonald's franchises.

The strike will target multiple restaurants - but not every local McDonald's - in each of the 10 cities: Chicago; Durham, North Carolina; Kansas City and St Louis, Missouri; Los Angeles; Miami; Milwaukee; New Orleans; Orlando, Florida; San Francisco.

"McDonald's has a responsibility to provide a safe place to work, and we're going to keep speaking out until the company hears our calls for change", Tanya Harrell, an employee in New Orleans who plans to go on strike, said in a press release Wednesday announcing the walkout.

McDonald's on Wednesday defended its anti-harassment efforts ahead of the demonstrations next week.

In an email sent to the AP, McDonald's said it has anti-sexual-harassment policies and training in place, and that "we firmly believe that our franchisees share this commitment". The company will also bring in outside experts, including from Seyfarth Shaw at Work and RAINN, to help work on its policies and procedures.

"Whatever policy they have is not effective", labor lawyer Mary Joyce Carlson told the news agency.

Organizers of the strike, scheduled for September 18 in cities including Chicago, Los Angeles and Kansas City, Mo., described it as the first multistate strike aimed specifically at combatting sexual harassment.

Organizers of the planned walkout say strikers will be demanding that the company improve procedures for receiving and responding to harassment complaints, and require anti-harassment training for managers and employees. Another demand will be formation of a national committee to address sexual harassment, comprised of workers, representatives from corporate and franchise stores, and leaders of national women's groups.

Thus far, the almost year-old #MeToo movement has not triggered a strike targeting a specific USA company.

In 1912, she said, several hundred garment workers at a corset factory in Kalamazoo, Michigan, walked off the job in a strike prompted by pervasive sexual harassment, as well as other poor working conditions.

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