After claims made by U.K. McDonald’s staff about mismanagement, sexual assault, and failure to provide protective equipment, employees of the fast food chain are preparing to strike again in the upcoming months. Organizers are attempting to unionize the chain's staff in locations across England, Wales, and Scotland; a strike in September over low wages and the enforcement of zero-hours contracts involved only two locations.
“We are looking at moving [the strikes] right across the country, so we are planning very carefully how that will be done and how workers can take part,” Ian Hodson, the national president of the Bakers, Food & Allied Workers Union, told The Guardian.
Trade unionists have compiled a number of complaints related to work injuries, sexual assault, and rude and aggressive customers, some of which have come anonymously from management-level employees. Organizers hope a union presence can compel the corporate leadership to address the claims.
“On a personal level it has been empowering to take the action, and the support has been much greater than we expected,” said Tom Holliday, an employee of a McDonald’s branch in Cambridge. “We still get people coming through in the drive through asking how it is going and what is going to happen in the future.” The September strikes against the fast food giant were the first in the U.K. since the chain began operating in the British Isles in the ‘70s. Hopefully even more impending strikes won’t render the U.K. one of the 10 countries where you’ll never find a McDonald’s.