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Class Action Targets McDonald’s for Racism

A class action lawsuit has been filed in a Florida court that alleges fast food giant McDonald’s practices racial discrimination in its employee training and day-to-day work protocol. The lawsuit stems from a November 7, 2015 incident that occurred at a McDonald’s restaurant in Davie, Florida. The plaintiff in the case, Bernard Elam, who is black, ordered a meal that came with a drink. The cups at the McDonald’s are provided by the staff, and the fountain soda is self-service for the customers. However, Elam was refused a cup by McDonald’s manager, Richard Espizito, who is also being sued in the lawsuit.

Another customer, also a black man, consoled Elam and told him Espizito had been rude to him, too. According to the complaint, after Espizito saw the two men talking, he became further enraged. Espizito used a racial slur several times toward the men, verbally threatening them and indicating with gestures that he would physically fight them as he paced behind the counter. The lawsuit alleges Espizito was showing McDonald’s employees how to treat customers. Some employees were grinning during his tirade. The entire McDonald’s establishment witnessed the scene.

Due to the threats, Plaintiff Elam called the police. In the police report, Espizito admitted to using the racial slur toward the two customers. The suit contends that Espizito, as a McDonald’s manager, sets store policy and he acted on behalf of the corporation. Espizito justified his actions in the police report, and had McDonald’s managers received racial sensitivity and customer relations training, the incident could have been prevented.

The humiliation and threats caused Elam psychological and emotional trauma. One key legal question arisen in the lawsuit is whether McDonald’s employee training policies and business practices are sufficient to prevent incidents like the one that occurred in Davie, Florida. The class action suit, representing all McDonald’s customers, was filed under the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.

Article Type: Lawsuit
Topic: Consumer

Most Recent Case Event

Class Action Complaint Targets McDonald’s for Racism

December 22, 2015

A class action has been filed in a Florida court that alleges fast food giant McDonald’s practices racial discrimination in its employee training and day-to-day work protocol. The lawsuit stems from a November 7, 2015 incident that occurred at a McDonald’s restaurant in Davie, Florida. 

mcdonalds_racial_discrimiation_complaint.pdf

Case Event History

Class Action Complaint Targets McDonald’s for Racism

December 22, 2015

A class action has been filed in a Florida court that alleges fast food giant McDonald’s practices racial discrimination in its employee training and day-to-day work protocol. The lawsuit stems from a November 7, 2015 incident that occurred at a McDonald’s restaurant in Davie, Florida. 

mcdonalds_racial_discrimiation_complaint.pdf
Tags: Civil Rights, Racial Discrimination