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NLRB files complaints against McDonalds Restaurants


JANUARY 2015, Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton Edition of The Union News

NLRB files complaints against McDonalds Restaurants


REGION, January 4th- The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) recently announced it had brought multiple charges against McDonald’s Restaurants alleging they violated the National Labor Relations Act (NLRAct) when some of their franchise owners retaliated and threatened workers for protesting low pay.

The national campaign by fast-food workers, mostly at McDonald’s Restaurants, to push for higher wages has gained momentum during 2014 with protest and strikes by workers in cities across the nation, however, the newspaper is not aware of any action taken by workers employed by regional McDonald’s franchise operators.

In the spring, a new labor organization was formed to attempt to organize fast-food workers throughout the United States.

The New York City based “Fast Food Workers Committee” Union filed with the United States Department of Labor (DOL), in Washington DC to be recognized as a labor organization that wants to represent workers employed within the fast-food industry including those working for McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Burger King and Dunkin’ Donuts.

The NLRB complaints allege McDonald’s and some franchise operators illegally retaliated against their workers and threatened firing them for joining the national campaign to raise wages to $15.00 an hour for fast-food workers.

The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) is supporting a national campaign called “Fast Food Forward” which includes calling for McDonald’s and other fast-food restaurants to pay their workers a “living wage.”

Several other unions, including the United Food and Commerical Workers (UFCW) Union is also supporting the unionization of the workers and their attempt to earn a higher living wage.

McDonald’s, many of their franchise owners, and other business groups have challenged the NLRB’s complaints stating that the agency was wrong to consider the company a “joint employer” and hold McDonald’s Restaurants responsible for the action of some of their franchise owners and operators.

According to McDonald’s, approximately 90 percent of the stores with the McDonald’s name in the nation are operated by franchise owners.

The NLRB alleges the company violated the NLRAct by disciplining workers who protested their low wages, spied on them and attempted to restrict them from contacting or speaking to representatives of anyone associated with an labor organization.