Ten former employees of a Virginia McDonald’s filed a civil rights lawsuit against the fast food giant. The employees allege that their supervisors subjected them to racial and sexual harassment and wrongfully terminated them. Nine of the employees are African-American, one is Hispanic, and seven are women. The plaintiffs are seeking lost wages, emotional distress, and other damages from the suit—which is being supported by the South Boston NAACP.
Some examples of harassment that the employees alleged they endured includes:
- Supervisors touched female employees inappropriately.
- Supervisors sent female employees sexually inappropriate images.
- Supervisors solicited sex from female employees.
- Supervisors complained that there were too many black people in the store.
- Supervisors referred to African-American employees as “bitch”, “ghetto”, and “ratchet”.
- Supervisors referred to Hispanic employee as a “dirty Mexican”.
- Supervisors punished African-American workers for breaking rules, while white employees got away with similar infractions.
- Supervisors devised a plan to reduce the number of African American employees working at the franchise.
- Nine employees were fired because they didn’t “fit the profile”.
- Employees were criticized about their hair or looks.
The suit is charging both McDonald’s corporate and the local franchise. The plaintiff’s attorney, Paul Smith, believes that McDonald’s corporate controls every aspect of the franchise including mandating policies and training supervisors how to deal with harassment. McDonald’s neither denied or confirmed the allegations but claims to have a “long standing history of embracing the diversity of employees, independent Franchisees, customers and suppliers.”
*image by Flickr
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