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America’s 'best first job'? My story of sexual harassment at McDonald’s

4 10 0
25.05.2019

Three years ago, when I was 16, I began working at a McDonald’s in my hometown of Tucson, Arizona. As the oldest of four children, I took the job to help my mother pay bills and support our family. I was excited to start “America’s best first job”, as McDonald’s tells the country in its classic television ads.

Being a crew member was tough – I had to juggle my schoolwork and cheerleading practice with the night shift at work.

I quickly learned how to deal with rude customers or keep the drive-thru moving. But I didn’t know how to deal with the unwanted and uncomfortable attention from my older shift manager.

He took opportunities to unnecessarily touch me or brush up against me. He would often text me inappropriate messages like how I looked good in my jeans. I tried to convince myself that this was just how things worked in the fast-food industry and that I needed to stay quiet if I wanted to keep my job.

When our family car was repossessed, I had no way to get home, so when the manager offered me rides home, I accepted. One night, he tried to kiss me, but I turned him down. I kept this information from my parents because I was embarrassed and felt like I was at fault for his behavior.

After I rejected that kiss, he........

© The Guardian