Open Letter to McDonald's CEO: Meet with Student Strikers Now

In early March, student workers from Asia and Latin America launched a surprise strike against their employer, a McDonald's in central Pennsylvania. The students, who paid between $3,000 to $5,000 to come to the United States as part of the J-1 cultural exchange visa program, alleged that they were assigned shifts of up to twenty-five consecutive hours, were paid less than the minimum wage, lived in substandard employer-owned housing and faced retaliation when they raised objections. Hours after the students began their work stoppage, they found themselves locked out of the employer-owned basement where they lived.


McDonald’s claims to be investigating the complaints and says it has cut ties with the manager of the students' franchises. However, they have not yet met directly with the students themselves. For a recent piece in The Nation, one of them, Alicia Marin, told reporter Josh Eidelson, "they say they want to know what happened....they don't ask the real students what happened."


The students are planning a mobilization on March 26 outside McDonald’s headquarters and at the home of company CEO Don Thompson. Sign our open letter imploring Don Thompson to meet directly with the students. Then head to the National Guestworker Alliance and join the students’ campaign.

A McDonald's store

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