McDonald’s workers in 19 cities have filed complaints against the company suffered burns fat because jumping from the frying pans, lack of protective equipment for them and other risks of work, according to labor organizers.
Complaints are the latest step in a campaign for a wage increase to remunerate workers $ 15 per hour and allow unionization of employees in the branch of fast food, which is pressuring McDonald’s to go to the negotiating table.
The measure is a proposal by the Service Employees International Union (International Union Service Employees) and started two years ago. Among other activities he has staged protests across the United States and filed lawsuits for wrongful payments to workers.
Burns and other risks were described in complaints filed in recent weeks to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (Management of Health and Safety at Work) and released Monday.
Workers say they rarely are given gloves when handling hot equipment and say they have suffered burns to clean grills that require care. One worker said the manager told him: “Put mayonnaise, nothing will happen to you”.
Complaints also speak of lack of training for handling hot fryers and prevent slipping on wet floor.
A representative of the Department of Labor, Laura McGinnis, confirmed that the agency received complaints but said he would not talk about it because it is a policy not to comment on ongoing investigations.
In a statement, McDonald’s said its independent franchisees have a commitment to provide security for their workers and review the accusations. “It is important to note that these complaints are part of a broader strategy orchestrated by activists against our brand aimed at attracting media attention,” a company spokeswoman, Heidi Barker SA Shekhem, in a statement.
Complaints represent a substantive part of the “Fight for 15″ launched to demand accounts McDonald’s for working conditions in their franchises campaign. That would allow the start of negotiations and unionization in the more than 14,000 restaurants in the US Company, which mostly are owned by franchisees. McDonald’s and other fast food chains such as Burger King and Wendy’s, say they are not responsible for the decisions of employers in franchised restaurants.
The issue has come to the attorney general of the National Labor Relations Board, which last year claimed that McDonald’s could be declared pattern set in worker complaints. The complaints have not yet been analyzed but it is expected that no matter which side loses, it will appeal the decision.