AP

Complaint: McDonald’s intentionally sold Muslim family bacon

Jun 1, 2022, 11:09 AM | Updated: 1:54 pm

BOSTON (AP) — Workers at a McDonald’s restaurant in Massachusetts intentionally put bacon on a fish sandwich that a Muslim woman had ordered for one of her children, a civil rights organization said Wednesday.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations filed a discrimination complaint on the woman’s behalf with the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination.

“It is commonly known that Islam forbids Muslims from eating pork,” the complaint says. “McDonald’s employees willfully added bacon to the complainant’s food in an effort to offend, humiliate, and cause distress to complainant and her young children.”

The family was served the sandwich last June at a McDonald’s restaurant in Chicopee, about 80 miles (128 kilometers) west of Boston.

The complaint is the first step in the process for seeking monetary damages, said Barbara Dougan, a CAIR lawyer. She also hopes it prompts McDonald’s to better train its workers to prevent a similar incident in the future.

“Religious discrimination at a place of public accommodation is not only illegal, but also morally reprehensible,” she said in a statement.

An email seeking comment was left with McDonald’s corporate headquarters in Chicago. A message was also left with someone who answered the phone at Gomez Enterprises LLC, which operates the McDonald’s on Meadow Street in Chicopee.

The experience prompted one the children to ask his mother if “they hate us.”

“McDonald’s made my children and me feel unwanted and worthless by intentionally stuffing a fish sandwich full of bacon for no other reason than to punish us for our faith and religious convictions,” the woman, Ghadir Alahmar, said in a statement. “This really hurt us. My children now wonder if they are welcome in their own country. They ask me, ‘Do they hate us?’ How is a mother supposed to answer that question?”

Alahmar, who wears a hajib and an abaya, entered the store on June 29 of last year with her twin 7-year-old sons, the complaint says. She ordered a plain fish sandwich, and had one of her children repeat the order to a worker in case they did not understand her accent.

They received their order, which included fries and cookies, and left the restaurant to walk to a nearby school playground where they planned to eat. One of her sons noticed the bacon.

The sandwich not only had bacon on it, but appeared to have extra bacon, the complaint says.

They did not eat the bacon, but one son ate the lower half of the bun and part of the fish filet, according to the complaint.

Alahmar’s husband returned to the store with the uneaten portion of the sandwich later that same evening and was refunded the purchase price.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

The U.S. Supreme Court is seen, Thursday, Feb. 8, 2024, in Washington. The U.S. Supreme Court has h...

Associated Press

Supreme Court decision on Trump’s election status could come Monday morning

A SCOTUS decision could come Monday in the case about whether Trump can be kicked off the ballot over his efforts to undo his 2020 defeat.

23 hours ago

Republican presidential candidate former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley poses for a selfie after speakin...

Associated Press

Nikki Haley wins D.C. Republican primary, her first 2024 victory

Nikki Haley has won the Republican primary in the District of Columbia, notching her first victory of the 2024 campaign.

24 hours ago

An Apache group that has fought to protect land it considers sacred from a copper mining project in...

Associated Press

A US appeals court ruling could allow mine development in central Arizona on land sacred to Apaches

An Apache group that has fought to protect land from a copper mining project in central Arizona suffered a significant blow.

1 day ago

On Friday, March 1, 2024, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said yogurt sold in the U.S. can ma...

Associated Press

Eating yogurt may reduce risk of type 2 diabetes, FDA says

Eating at least two cups of yogurt a week might reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said.

1 day ago

Arizona will not approve new housing construction on the fast-growing edges of metro Phoenix that r...

Associated Press

Arizona Senate passes plan to manage rural groundwater, but final success is uncertain

A plan to manage rural groundwater passed the Arizona Senate amid concerns about the availability of sufficient water for future generations.

3 days ago

A woman pauses while shopping at a Kohl's store in Clifton, N.J., Jan. 26, 2024. On Thursday, Feb. ...

Associated Press

Federal Reserve’s preferred inflation gauge picked up last month in sign of still-elevated prices

An inflation gauge favored by the Federal Reserve increased in January, the latest sign that the slowdown in U.S. consumer price increases is occurring unevenly from month to month.

4 days ago

Sponsored Articles

...

DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.

...

Collins Comfort Masters

Avoid a potential emergency and get your home’s heating and furnace safety checked

With the weather getting colder throughout the Valley, the best time to make sure your heating is all up to date is now. 

...

Sanderson Ford

The best ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Day and give back to the community

Veterans Day is fast approaching and there's no better way to support our veterans than to donate to the Military Assistance Mission.

Complaint: McDonald’s intentionally sold Muslim family bacon