McDonald's employees union effort given green light

Employees at the McDonald's restaurant on Peel street in downtown Montreal are on their way to becoming unionized.

On Thursday, morning the Quebec labour board granted an accreditation request filed by the CSN to represent 45 employees at the restaurant.

The CSN filed the accreditation request in August and last week, lawyers for both sides made their final arguments following three days of hearings.

Tough fight ahead

Arthur Sandborn says the ruling is good news, but the union leader says he expects this is just the beginning.

"They still don't have any McDonald's unionized in North America," says Sandborn. "So the chances of them actually becoming civilized at this point and negotiating with their employees are pretty weak, I'd say."

Sandborn expects McDonald's will try to appeal the ruling, but the union leader says the CSN will continue to fight for the employees at the Peel Street McDonald's.

The union plans to demonstrate outside a different McDonald's outlet every week until a collective agreement is signed.

The goal

The goal is to put pressure on McDonald's to negotiate by raising public awareness about what Sandborn says are working conditions which exploit employees.

"They have poor pay, they don't have right to (earn) tips and it's a system where you work 8, 10, 12 months and then you quit because you're disgusted," he says.

McDonald's has yet to comment on the ruling.