Colleen Coveney Quoted in Forbes

Katz, Marshall & Banks partner Colleen Coveney was quoted in an article in Forbes, “McDonald’s Faces Challenges in Addressing Harassment Allegations and Issues.”

The fast food giant has come under fire for a series of sexual harassment claims at several McDonald’s restaurants. Following a CBS Sunday Morning story detailing the allegations, McDonald’s CEO Chris Kempczinski pledged support for the women who have come forward with allegations. However, due to the decentralized system of franchises, and the incentive structure for owners, that pledge is easier said than done.

Ms. Coveney spoke to Forbes about how Kempczinski could follow through on his pledge. She recommended improving the work environment, where harassment is openly condemned, and creating a system in which employees know their rights and how to practically raise complaints without the fear of retaliation.

“Achieving this not only requires the development of internal policy standards that clearly prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex and establish an effective complaint resolution process,” explained Ms. Coveney. “But it also requires ensuring that the company actually implements, enforces, and regularly monitors adherence to these standards.”

Not only would such changes help protect McDonald’s employees from discrimination and harassment, it may inspire other fast food companies to adopt similar policies.

Ms. Coveney hopes that Kempczinski’s pledge “signal[s] to business leaders at other companies that sex discrimination continues to pervade the modern workplace, and that eliminating it in all forms requires the attention and support from leadership.”

Read the full story here.