Cobb McDonald’s employees protest claiming poor conditions, wage theft

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Cobb McDonald’s employees protest claiming poor conditions, wage theft

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AP Photo/Mark Lennihan
Several employees of a Powder Springs McDonald’s protested Thursday claiming an unsafe workplace and wage theft.

Employees of a Cobb County McDonald’s protested the store Thursday afternoon claiming they wouldn’t go back to work until it was made safe and fair again, which the company said it will do if needed.

The staff along with workplace advocates said that the air conditioning unit for the kitchen has been out for about a month at the 4021 Powder Springs Road store.

A news release from 9to5, the women’s workplace advocacy group, in part reads: “They also demand that management stops stealing employees’ wages ... management uses the software to manipulate hours so employees receive less pay.”

Antoin Adams has been working in the kitchen nearly five months and said he’s been shorted on overtime paychecks.

The 24-year-old said he took the job when he moved to Powder Springs.

He said that he regularly gets $2 less an hour than he’s supposed to when he works overtime.

As for the air conditioning, he claims one woman who works there has passed out twice from the heat.

“I don’t mind doing my job, but treat us right,” he said.

Protest organizers threatened further action in the news release if problems weren’t immediately fixed: “We will engage in a protected strike until the conditions are improved.”

An organizer said that five employees participated in the protest, which they plan to do again Wednesday. It is unclear if these employees returned to work.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution asked the store for comment and was sent to the company’s corporate communications staff, which sent a statement attributed to Jim Abedi, described as an owner and operator.

“The safety and well-being of my employees is extremely important. I will review these concerns and take any appropriate action to address the situation,” the statement reads.

When the AJC followed up on the statement and asked for specific responses to concerns of an unsafe workplace and alleged wage theft, a spokeswoman did not respond Thursday.

When reached Friday afternoon, the spokeswoman said she had no further comment.

On the other side of the country, McDonald's workers successfully sued a San Francisco franchise owner, which was ordered by a federal court to pay employees $3.75 million.

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