McDonald's staff launch campaign against sexual harassment

By agency reporter
May 22, 2019

A UK McDonald’s worker, Christine Hayes from South London, has travelled to the US to stand up for colleagues who face sexual harassment. She joined other workers who have been victims of sexual harassment whilst working at McDonalds in a protest outside the global company’s HQ on 21 May 2019.

Her actions launch a new phase in the McStrike campaign to tackle sexual harassment in stores. Christine is a member of the Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union (BFAWU). The union's McStrike campaign has seen McDonald’s workers strike for the first time in the UK, calling for £10 an hour, guaranteed hours, and for a union.

Ian Hodson, President of the BFAWU said: “Our union has been speaking to workers in McDonald’s up and down the UK, they are telling us that sexual harassment is common-place. Complaints get swept under the carpet and workers are often victimised for raising these issues. McDonald’s deals with sexual harassment by moving abusive managers from one store to another. Workers are paid compensation on the condition they sign non-disclosure agreements to ensure the the issue stays hidden.”

Christine Hayes said: “I am in the US to stand with other McDonalds’ workers to challenge the culture of sexual harassment that exists in McDonald’s. It’s time for McDonald’s to stop ignoring this problem and act.

“My message to all McDonald’s workers who like me have suffered sexual harassment is that we believe you and we are on your side. By coming together in a union we can have the power to create change in our working environment. It’s time to say no more to sexual harassment.”  

“Nobody should have to go to work and be told to 'put up' with sexual harassment or told 'you better have evidence' by their manager like I was. I’m going to McDonalds HQ because I want them to recognise they have a problem and act to solve it. I don’t want anyone to experience what I went through. It’s the least you can expect that when you go to work you are safe”. 

The BFAWU is the largest independent trade union in the food sector in the British Isles and spearheads the The McStrike and Fast Food Rights They aim to ensure fast food workers have the right to a fair wage and decent working conditions across the country.

* Fast Food Rights


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