The origin of the #MeToo movement goes as far back as the days of MySpace in 2006. Since then, it’s taken on a form of its own as it railed against the copious amount of sexual harassment and sexual assault that goes on in the workplace. The #MeToo movement has brought down Harvey Weinstein and countless other men who’ve used their positions of power to sexually assault women. Of course, this issue isn’t solely found in Hollywood but in every industry across the world including the world of fast food.
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Twenty-five lawsuits have been filed against McDonald’s accusing the fast-food corporation of condoning sexual harassment in the workplace and retaliating against the employees who’ve tried to speak out against it. The charges and lawsuits that were filed against the company were announced by the American Civil Liberties Union, the labor group Fight for $15, and the Times Up Legal Defense Fund.
Executives at the company, which hires around 850,000 people across 14,000 stores in America, received a letter by Time’s Up which accused them of failing to properly handle sexual harassment complaints. McDonald’s CEO Steve Easterbrook said in a letter that the company has taken steps over the years to ensure the safety of its employees.
“McDonald’s is sending a clear message that we are committed to creating and sustaining a culture of trust where employees feel safe, valued and respected,” Easterbrook wrote in a letter to Illinois Senator Tammy Duckworth and Padma Lakshmi who both support the worker’s cause.
The 25 lawsuits filed against the company include three new suits, two from employees who previously filed charges, as well as more charges filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).