McDonald’s Australia was quick to respond and take action after a video of one of its franchise owners became viral over this past weekend.
The multi-billion dollar corporation is being applauded for swiftly responding to the video, which showed franchise operator Robert Vigors and a woman, thought to be his partner, Karen Ridge, verbally abusing and spouting racial slurs at an Indigenous family on their Mildura property.
The video, filmed by Robby Wirramanda and uploaded to Twitter by one of his family members, quickly amassed over 260,000 views. The footage showed the woman identified as Karen attempting to rip an Aboriginal flag from the back of one of the family members’ cars, to which Mr. Wirramanda responds, “It’s too strong for you Karen.”
Vigors and Ridge, determined in their efforts, then questioned Mr. Wirramanda’s Aboriginality reportedly due to the colour of his skin, with Mr. Vigors stating “People like you make a mockery of true Aboriginals. I have a lot of good Aboriginal friends they would love to see you and give you a lecture about what an Aboriginal is.”
While Mr. Wirramanda calmly tried to engage with both Mr. Vigors and Ms. Ridge, telling them repeatedly he will be uploading the footage online to expose them for their racism, this didn’t seem to at all deter the couple. Attempting to shut down the conversation by bidding the couple goodnight, Ms. Ridge responded, “Go and live in your f***ing humpy down the river.”
Once the footage was uploaded, the hashtag #TooStrongForYouKaren was quick to begin trending on Twitter, with many outraged by the incident.
McDonald’s Australia were quick to act in light of the footage being released, announcing on their official Facebook page that franchise owner Robert Vigors had “parted ways” with the company, and that the Mildura and Irymple restaurants he had previously run would be handled by corporate administration in light of the changes so as to ensure a smooth transition and continuing of operations.
The statement followed on,
“The comments made are unacceptable and do not reflect the beliefs of the company as an inclusive workplace for our employees and customers. The matter is currently under investigation.”
Many have taken to social media to applaud the company on their swift action in light of the events that unfolded,