McDonald’s is launching a recruiting initiative meant to increase franchisees from diverse backgrounds, the fast-food giant’s latest commitment to improve equity and inclusion.
The Chicago-based company has been rolling out diversity initiatives and setting goals for itself since last year, when George Floyd’s murder sparked calls for corporate diversity reform across America. At the same time, however, McDonald’s has been hit with lawsuits from Black franchisees alleging discrimination. And last month, CEO Chris Kempczinski came under fire for text messages about the shooting deaths of two Chicago children, which some workers called racist and classist.
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Though a judge dismissed at least one of the lawsuits, and Kempczinski has apologized to community leaders and employees, it highlights the scrutiny corporations face when it comes to diversity. Consumers are becoming less willing to accept corporate goal-setting and statements as enough.