McDonald’s to pay black store owner $ 33.5 million to end bias lawsuit – NBC Connecticut

McDonald’s will pay a former baseball player who owns several franchises $ 33.5 million to end a lawsuit he has filed against the company accusing him of racial discrimination.

Herb Washington, who is black, owned more than a dozen restaurants in Ohio and Pennsylvania when he filed a complaint in February, saying the company had treated white owners more favorably and denied him the opportunity to buy restaurants in wealthier communities.

McDonald’s said in a statement Thursday that the amount it was paying Washington for 13 franchises was “no more than what we consider a fair price for the value of restaurants,” reported.

“While we were confident in the strength of our case, this resolution aligns with McDonald’s values ​​and allows us to continue to focus on our commitments to the communities we serve,” the company said, adding that ” discrimination has no place at McDonald’s “.

Washington agreed to drop the lawsuit and no longer be a franchisee under the settlement agreement.

The lawsuit filed in Youngstown U.S. District Court said McDonald’s was seeking to steer Washington toward stores in poorer neighborhoods and that “black homeowners average about $ 700,000 in annual sales per store relative to homeowners. white “.

The outlet has contacted Washington attorneys in Cleveland and New Orleans for comment.

Last week, the company announced it would spend $ 250 million over five years to recruit and support franchise owners from minority communities, the outlet reported.

In September 2020, more than 50 former black franchise owners sued the company with similar allegations. This lawsuit indicated that black homeowners were offered to buy stores in poor areas that had higher security and insurance costs and were denied things like rent assistance during renovations which, according to them, were granted to white owners.

Washington is a former Michigan State University track star who played for two seasons with the Oakland Athletics in the mid-1970s.

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