By Judith Hawkins
Staff at McDonald’s have gone on strike today, uniting with fast food workers across the world in a global demonstration to demand an end to zero-hour contracts, union recognition and a new minimum wage.
The strikes, organised with the support of the Bakers, Food and Allied Workers’ Union (BFAWU), are the latest in a series of protests about pay and working conditions at the fast food chain.
Dozens of towns and cities in the UK will see walkouts, with six branches in London seeing workers march on to Downing Street.
As well as demonstrating in the UK, the International Union of Food Workers is co-ordinating large protests in Brazil, Chile, France and New Zealand as part of a global fast food workers’ day of action.
The key demands of the striking employees are a £15 an hour minimum wage, guaranteed hours of up to 40 hours a week, and an end to youth rates of pay.
To avoid the issues of zero-hour contracts, they are also calling for shift patterns to be given to workers four weeks in advance, greater union recognition at work, and the right to be treated with respect by management, all of which they are describing as a ‘New Deal’ for McDonald’s workers.
It follows previous staff walkouts from some of the fast food chain’s branches in both 2017 and 2018.
In support of the strikes, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn tweeted: “McDonald’s workers are organising so they can be paid £15 per hour, get guaranteed hours each week and get union recognition.
“It’s only by coming together that we can make real change. So support the McStrikers”.