By SHANNYCE LASHLEY
Local McDonald’s employees demanded better health and safety conditions from the fast food giant at a protest staged outside a McDonald’s restaurant in Midtown on Tuesday.
Workers across the country have filed 28 complaints about health and safety conditions at McDonalds in 19 cities, organizers said.
“It ends here and this is what we are here for today,” said Jorel Ware, a McDonald’s employee. “Today they are going to start caring.”
Employees complained that some McDonald’s managers tell them to treat their burns with condiments like mustard and ketchup and then tell them to get back to work. According to a survey conducted by Hart Research Associates, 79 percent of fast-food workers in the U.S. have been burned on the job in the past year.
“My managers always tell me to work faster. I was working too quickly and I hit my head on the oven door, burning right above my eye,” said Ware. “There was nothing in the medical kit. My supervisor suggested that I put some butter on the blister, but that stung even worse. I was told to get back to work, that there was nothing they could do.”
At the protest employees threatened to stage a walk out if demands were not met and they said that the understaffing and constant pressure to work faster are the main reasons for injuries on the job. Many of them also chanted that they need first aid kits on the job to treat their injuries.
“I get burned a lot on my job, just like this happened to me it happened to other workers,” said Rosa Rivera.. “I feel like we ne more respect at work. We also need first aid kits at work because when we get burnt they tell us to put ketchup or something.”
The employees chanted, “All I want to really say is they don’t really care about us” and “What do we want? Justice”. They also held signs that read “Cover it up and get back to work, and Burned by McDonald’s.”
This posed another challenge facing McDonald’s as the company tries to revamp their public image in light of recent events.
On March 09, a teenager was brutally attacked inside a McDonald’s restaurant on Flatbush Avenue, Brooklyn. The victim suffered several injuries and five of the six suspects have been arrested for their involvement in the beating. The altercation caught on cell phone cameras went viral on social media sites; all the people involved in the fight were teenagers and witnesses did not call the police or intervene.