Nearly a dozen workers are suing McDonald’s, alleging “rampant” racism, sexual harassment and name-calling, as well as illegal terminations.
The Civil Rights Act lawsuit alleges that more than a dozen black workers were fired simultaneously last May from three McDonald’s stores in Virginia because they “didn’t fit the profile” that the company wanted at its restaurants.
The workers also claim in the suit that supervisors routinely called them derogatory names, such as “bitch,” “ghetto,” and “ratchet,” and “inappropriately touched female employees on their legs and buttocks,” sent female employees pictures of their genitalia, and solicited sexual relations from employees.
In one case, a supervisor allegedly removed her false teeth and asked to perform oral sex on male employees. In another case, a supervisor allegedly called an Hispanic employee a “dirty Mexican” and “hot Mexican.”
The lawsuit names McDonald’s and franchise owner Soweva Co. as defendants. It claims that Soweva set out to reduce the number of African American employees in its stores after becoming the operator of McDonald’s locations in South Boston and Clarkesville toward the end of 2013.
From the complaint:
Soweva’s owner, Michael Simon, explained to workers that “the ratio was off in each of the stores,” and that he just wanted “the ratio to be equal.” Soweva’s supervisors were blunt, telling employees that it was “too dark” in the restaurants, and that they were going to hire different workers because they “need to get the ghetto out of the store.” Before implementing the plan, one supervisor said to the other, “now we can get rid of the niggers and the Mexicans.”
Soweva proceeded to hire a large number of white employees in March 3014 and two months later, about 15 black employees were terminated, according to the complaint.
“When they asked why they were being terminated, Soweva’s owner told them that they were good workers, but they “didn’t fit the profile” of his organisation,” the complaint says.
We reached out to McDonald’s for comment and will update when we hear back.
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