Reportedly on Tuesday, the Hourly wage workers of McDonald’s have demanded paid sick leave and safety protocols to be made due to the current health crisis. The wage workers of the US McDonald’s restaurant have also claimed that no initiative has been taken by the company to protect or safeguard the health of workers employed in the company.
Despite other local restaurants taking strong steps and initiating new policies and mandatory rules to be followed, McDonald’s has commented on nothing so far. The employees of this popular burger chain also claimed that the company had provided no guidelines, emergency training, or protocols.
The workers, including cashiers, cooks, and cleaners of McDonald’s, are associated with the Labor group Fight for $15 and have demanded immediately paid leaves in case one of their fellow associates falls sick due to the ongoing epidemic. One of the their employee and an active member of the Labor Union mailed a statement which read, “McDonald’s needs to step up and do everything it can to make sure workers like me are safe and that if we do get sick, we can take time off to get better without falling behind on our bills.”
According to the demands made by the Labor Group, all that the employees seek is that the company endures some responsibilities towards its hourly wage workers. By that they mean, that in case an employee falls sick on duty due to Corona-virus, he or she may be provided with paid leave. The workers of McDonald’s are paid based on hours, and it usually ranges between $7.25, and the maximum goes up to $15.
The employees also state that if the restaurant in question is being shut down due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the employees may be paid for the absence and no work days, so that it does not hamper them on paying their bills. The employees of McDonald’s have long been fighting and protesting for Fight for $15 and have also garnered the attention and support from various leading social groups, activists, and political leaders.
However, the company on receiving these demands has not responded immediately, and the workers are waiting for the company to resolve their demands so that the next steps can be taken immediately.
The restaurant workers of the US, have long been demanding for higher pay and better working conditions. And this Fight has always targeted McDonald’s as it is one of those companies that pay the least to their hourly wage workers.
Darden Restaurants, which are the current owner of various leading restaurants and food joints, recently made changes to their sick leaves and released a statement where they claimed to provide paid sick leaves to their employees. This statement was made on Tuesday and came close to the demand made by the McDonald’s employees.
Out of 600 cases reported in the US, 25 deaths have occurred due to COVID-19, with more cases being reported around the states. Despite such figures, McDonald’s has issued no statement, to safeguard its employees or even the health of people eating in their popular food chain.
In January, when the COVID-19 outbreak was reported in China, McDonald’s on a press meeting stated that due to the outbreak, there would be a slight drop on their profits but nothing more than that as they collected only royalties from the chain of their restaurants present in China.
The company was supposed to hold a meeting of executives and several owners of leading franchisees of McDonald’s. Still, after the rising reports of the outbreak, the company canceled it and will now be holding a digital convention instead of its biennial-in person worldwide convention. It has not gone well with the US wage workers of McDonald’s and a worker Fran Marion of Kansas, McDonald’s stated that “The company canceled a meeting of executives and franchisees, but it’s not making any plans for us front line workers, who cannot afford to take a day off without pay if we get sick.”
Whether the employees will be taking a stronger against the company and its policies or are they going to succumb to the lack of responsibility provided by the company towards its employees is yet to be known. Other food chains like Burger King, Taco Bell, KFC, and some more local joints have reportedly made a few tweaks and changes to their policies, which are in favor of their employees.