Following the report that a Muslim woman was told to remove her headscarf or leave one of the fast-food chain’s restaurants in London, I, on the behalf of the Harrow Monitoring Group and the Harrow Council for Justice, raised the matter with the McDonald’s UK.
McDonald’s UK CEO Paul Pomroy has apologised for the incident, assuring that they take this matter very seriously and are addressing the situation with the restaurant and security firm involved.
“As a Business operating in diverse communities nationwide, we must always be mindful of our behaviours – what we say and do with both our customers and teams alike – and I want to make it absolutely clear that we welcome people of all faiths and do not have any policy which restricts or prevents anyone wearing a hijab, or any other religious attire, in our restaurants” he said.
Atul Pathak OBE, managing director Appt Corporation, owning and running a chain of 26 McDonald’s which stretch from Maidenhead and Bracknell, to Finchley and Richmond, said, “I absolutely echo what Paul says and I add my apologies to all my Muslim brothers and sisters”.
He also reassured that urgent steps have been taken to deal with the security firm and the individual concerned, adding “we not only serve customers with hijab but also employ many staff who choose to wear hijab whilst working”.
I appreciate that Mr Pathak made enquiries and found out more about this unfortunate incident when he was not even in the UK – was visiting India.
It looks clear that this isolated incident took place not on the basis of a policy but because of a local ill action.