McDonald’s Franchise May Have Exploited Foreign Students

by Christopher Freeburn | March 12, 2013 11:52 am

arcos dorados mcdonalds 630[1]The U.S. State Department is investigating an Argentine student’s claim[2] that he and more than a dozen other foreign students were badly treated by a McDonald’s (NYSE:MCD[3]) franchise.

The student, Jorge Rios, alleges that he and other foreign student workers paid between $3,000 and $4,000 to cover the costs of traveling to the U.S. for a work-study program at a McDonald’s near Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The students received student work visas from the U.S. government, ABC News notes.

Foreign student workers were required to remain available for work at the franchise at all times and were not paid overtime, the students claim. More than 73,000 foreign students participated in summer work-study programs in the U.S. last year.

The Argentine students arrived in December, which is summer time in the southern hemisphere. A petition has been started by the students and the National Guestworker Alliance requesting that McDonald’s pay the students the overtime they claim they are owed.

A McDonald’s spokesperson told ABC News that the company was investigating the claims.

In January, McDonald’s an a Michigan franchisee agreed to pay $700,000 to settle a lawsuit over claims that some of the menu items advertised as being prepared under Islamic halal rules at a Dearborn restaurant[4], weren’t.

Shares of McDonald’s were flat in Tuesday morning trading.

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  2. is investigating an Argentine student’s claim:
  3. MCD:
  4. advertised as being prepared under Islamic halal rules at a Dearborn restaurant:

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